A heart-stopping video of a man in China bravely climbing up a window to save a child trapped in a raging building fire has gone viral online.
Daring rescue: The clip was taken during a fire that had broken out on the third floor of the Huayang Nianhua complex, a residential building in Jinan City in Shandong Province on July 13.
The footage shows a young girl sitting on the window ledge with one of her legs dangling outside while being surrounded by thick black smoke from inside the apartment. A man is then seen emerging from a window right below the stranded child, maneuvering himself to climb a floor up.
Upon reaching the child, he successfully brought her away from the flame and smoke and sat with her near an air conditioning unit to wait for further assistance. Shortly after their escape, the window and the room were engulfed in flames, crumbling down to the ground. Both the man and the child were eventually rescued by firefighters using a ladder.
“The uncle was scared too but he asked me to hold his hands and not to be afraid,” the girl said
after the rescue.
Hero’s account: The rescuer, identified by local media as Xu Liang, is a retired member of the People’s Armed Police who served for five years in Gansu Province.
According to Xu, the child he rescued is his neighbor in the apartment complex. When he noticed the fire and heard the child’s cries for help, he immediately thought of his own child and rushed to her aid.
“I was extremely worried and wanted to rescue her as quickly as possible,” he was quoted in Chinese as saying. “Since there was no other way to reach the apartment, I had to climb up from below through the window.”
Good Samaritan: Xu sustained minor injuries and shared that while his police training involved climbing windows, he lamented that his weight gain since his retirement made the climb physically challenging.
“We safely descended from the height, and at that moment, my heart was at ease,” he said. “I was glad that at least the child was safe.”
In light of the support and praise he received online, Xu explained that publicizing his act was not his intention as he was merely lending a helping hand. Local authorities have expressed their intention to nominate Xu Liang for an award recognizing him as a Good Samaritan.
Zero casualties: The fire, which local fire officials have attributed to a charging electric scooter, was successfully put out in 15 minutes.
It was later revealed that during Xu’s valiant rescue mission, two other simultaneous operations were underway to save the other family members who also found themselves trapped in the building. The child’s father managed to escape by descending a ladder provided by a neighbor through the bathroom window, while the mother was rescued by yet another courageous neighbor.