It was the keen eye of Coquitlam's James Amey, 12, which spotted the smoke rising out from his neighbour's home on Johnson Street, and it was his quick reaction that prevented a major fire from breaking out.
In honour of his hasty response, the Coquitlam fire department awarded the teenager a Certificate of Commendation at Scott Creek Middle School on Thursday morning.
"We're very proud of him," said Karen Amey, James' mom.
His parents were joined in attendance by two classes of students and Susan Causton, the neighbour whose house was starting to catch on fire.
"He was conscientious enough to look up and say, 'Where is this coming from?'" Causton said.
"He saw smoke bellowing out of my bathroom, and it was because of him that my whole place, including three other homes didn't go up in fire."
The fire department confirmed it as an electrical fire and that there was only about a fiveminute window before smoke and fire would have endangered everyone
in the Johnston Street townhouse building.
"It was already a serious fire, so it was minutes away from involving the whole unit and quite possibly the complex," said Coquitlam fire department's assistant chief Stu Aspinall.
"I think it's important that all kids out there feel like they can contribute, and it was his keen eye that started the whole response," he added.
If you suspect there is a fire in your area, the fire department says not to hesitate in dialing 911.
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