Firefighters praise rescue
A LEICHHARDT family have escaped death thanks to a passer-by who pulled them from their burning home on Christmas Eve.
A 33-year-old woman and a child were rescued from the fire about 2.20pm Saturday.
The blaze gutted the house, destroying all their possessions.
The pair were saved by Thomas Pourau, who was driving past on his way to Riverlink Shopping Centre when he spotted smoke pouring from the Larsen St home.
At first it appeared nobody was home but Mr Pourau stopped to search the building and heard the a little boy's cries for help.
He smashed a window at the front of the house and grabbed the boy before he was harmed by the flames.
"I heard a little boy screaming and I looked inside. There was smoke everywhere. He kept saying to me 'I don't want to die' and I told him he wasn't going to die," Mr Pourau said.
Another neighbour from Larsen St then kicked the front door open in search of any more occupants.
Mr Pourau said the pair looked inside but the home was full of smoke.
The neighbour came back out when the woman crawled to the front door.
The men picked her up and carried her from the burning home to the front footpath where paramedics provided medical treatment.
The little boy and his mum were taken to the Royal Brisbane Hospital.
The woman suffered thickness burns to the right side of her body while the child suffered smoke inhalation but avoided any burns.
Queensland Fire and Rescue Ipswich Station Officer Des Sardie said Mr Pourau and the neighbour's actions were heroic.
"Absolutely. There was a high probability that the young child and the mum could have died, especially with the burns to the mother," he said.
Mr Sardie said it initially appeared the fire started in the kitchen and was not suspicious.
Neighbour Fay Ziebart was having an afternoon rest and woke up to the sound of the smoke alarm from next door beeping.
"I got up and I heard a beep, beep, beep. I thought it was a battery or something going flat. I looked outside and saw smoke and flames coming out the back," she said.