Galashiels Academy pupils recognised with top award for bravery

Three 12-year-olds who alerted the fire service when discovering a house fire have been hailed for their bravery by Scotland’s top fire officer.

Drae Martin, Teagan Ramsay and Melissa Watson, have all been awarded with the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Chief Officer’s Commendation.

While walking past a block of flats in Galashiels in October last year, the young people heard the smoke alarm from the first-floor property where there was a developing fire.

The youngsters acted quickly and calmly to raise the alarm.  They went into the stairwell to investigate, identified the flat where the detector was ringing and tried to alert the occupier. 

When they got no response, they asked a neighbour to phone the fire and rescue service.  They then waited on the street to meet the firefighters.

Crews from Galashiels Station attended and extinguished the fire and praised the children for their quick actions.

Drae, Teagan and Melissa are first year pupils who attend Galashiels Academy were presented with the honour on Friday, 23 February by Chief Officer Ross Haggart.

The Chief Officer’s Commendation is one of the highest citations the Service can grant to members of the public deserving special recognition.

Three children receive award from top fire officer in Scotland, standing in front of fire appliance.

The youths told firefighters that they acted on instinct and were determined to help the occupier of the flat.

The advice from firefighters for everyone to remember if there is a fire in your home, is: “Get out and call 999.”

Chief Officer for Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Ross Haggart said: “I was delighted to present these three young people with the highest honour we can bestow on a member of the public. Their quick decision making and actions almost certainly saved a life on that day.

“After they raised the alarm, fire service crews were able to contain the fire and ensure the safety of not only the person in the flat, but the rest of the building. This was a life and death situation, and the three children are true heroes. They richly deserve the award they received.

“Melissa, Teagan and Drae should be extremely proud of themselves.”

Their brave act has earned the inspirational first year pupils a Daily Record Pride of Scotland Award nomination in the Children of Courage category.

Three children sit in front of fire appliance with firefighter helmet on.