‘Superman’ who survived 98 per cent burns thanks Hackney fire crew who saved his life

Constantin and Dean Lawson

Constantin and Dean Lawson - Credit: Archant

A burns victim has thanked the quick-thinking fire crew from Homerton who helped save his life after he suffered 98 per cent burns in a horrific fire.

Constantin, his carer Ally, Ally’s grandson and Homerton white watch

Constantin, his carer Ally, Allys grandson and Homerton white watch - Credit: Archant

Constantin Huber was filling up a mobile generator with petrol in the back of his van when the fumes exploded engulfing him, his van and a shop front in Mare Street on January 11 last year.

Homerton’s white watch team were just around the corner - about to carry out a home fire safety visit - and after they saw smoke rising they “quickly shot round”.

Firefighter Dean Lawson, who was first off the fire engine that day said: It only took a minute and I was rigged up and off the fire engine with the hose when I saw the van alight and a man on all fours.

“I quickly put a fine spray on him and he was saying ‘No, No, No’, and I was apologising to him.

The scene of the fire in Mare Street

The scene of the fire in Mare Street - Credit: Archant


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“I didn’t think he would survive. At the end of the incident the paramedic came over and said that if I hadn’t acted in the way I did he would have been dead.”

When the blaze occurred Romanian-born Mr Huber covered his face with his hands, thus it is the only part of his body that wasn’t affected by fire.

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He spent two-and-a-half months in a coma and another nine months in hospital.

As far as his doctors are aware he is the only person ever to survive 98 per cent full thickness burns.

The wreckage of the van, after the explosion

The wreckage of the van, after the explosion - Credit: Archant

His remarkable recovery was made possible by an experimental new technique, whose ground-breaking approach has been made into a documentary sent to doctors across the world dealing with severe burns.

Mr Huber visited Homerton Fire Station alongside his carer Ally on Monday to meet the watch who saved his life.

Firefighter Brian Seaman who also was at the incident said Constantin had amazed them all by his recovery and attitude.

He said: “It reminds you when you moan about the simple things, other people are dealing with greater hardship.

“Constantin is a true Superman, and is welcome at the fire station anytime.”

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