'Swift' Action By ECT Minibus Drivers Halts Wildfire

Husband and wife team act quickly to prevent serious damage

Mera and Stuart Swift. Picture: ECT


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Quick-thinking by a husband and wife team who drive a minibus for Ealing Community Transport (ECT) prevented a wildfire causing serious damage.

Stuart and Mera Swift spotted smoke billowing out close to parked cars at the junction of Avalon Road & Crossway on Tuesday 19 July as Stuart was driving to collect children with special educational needs and disabilities from a nearby school. Mera was acting as his passenger assistant.

Their quick thinking as community-minded minibus drivers at ECT meant they knew what to do. Using the fire extinguisher carried in their minibus they acted quickly to prevent potentially serious damage and risk to passers by. The recent heatwave exacerbated an already dry summer seeing London experience an unprecedented level of wildfires.

They stopped at a safe distance, and Mera alerted residents, sought out the owners of the cars parked close to the fire, and called the Fire Brigade as Stuart built a makeshift “fire break” before using the fire extinguisher to put out the fire.

Mohammed Zafarrudin another ECT minibus driver who stopped to help said, “Stuart’s quick thinking and actions prevented what could have been far worse”.

Stuart’s normal route is taking children to and from school; he was not carrying any passengers at the time of the incident. Each ECT minibus carries a fire extinguisher and staff are well trained.

Fayyaz Dar, General Manager at ECT said, “We provide transport to the vulnerable, elderly and not - so - mobile members of Ealing community. Being safe comes as second nature to us, and civic duty is woven into the fabric of what we do. We are proud of our team and grateful for their quick thinking, people like Stuart, Mera and Mohammed make a real difference to people’s lives.”

If you think ECT can help you or a relative that has difficulty using mainstream public transport contact them on 020 88133210 or email:info@ectcharity.co.uk.

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August 4, 2022

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