A HAVE-a-go hero is being praised after jumping into the Leeds-Liverpool Canal to save a man’s life.
The man, named by firefighters as Lee Robinson, heard the man’s desperate cries from his flat in Trencherfield Mill at around 4am on Saturday and immediately went to help.
He jumped into the freezing water and kept the struggling man afloat until the fire brigade and police reached the scene.
The crews from Wigan fire station used throw lines to drag both men to safety.
The man who had fallen into the water, who is believed to be in his 40s, was suffering from hypothermia and was taken to Wigan Infirmary.
Firefighters believe the man got into difficulties was under the influence of alcohol and lost his balance while making his way along the towpath.
They praised the selfless bravery of Mr Robinson and said without his actions they may not have reached the scene in time.
Watch manager Shaun Aspey said: “Mr Robinson heard the man shouting for help and came down to rescue him. He jumped into the canal and managed to keep him afloat until we arrived and could extricate them both.
“I don’t know how long the man had been in the water but he couldn’t speak.
“It is very lucky Mr Robinson heard his shouts because with the temperature of the water it’s only five to 10 minutes before someone stops swimming or treading water.
“If he hadn’t gone into the water I don’t know what would have happened.”
The crews remained at the scene for around 45 minutes. A specialist water rescue unit from Eccles was also alerted to the incident but was not needed.