Welwyn Hatfield police officers awarded royal lifesaving honours
TWO hero police officers, who risked their lives to save a student from a blazing inferno after a head-on car crash in Hatfield, are to be awarded royal honours. Detective inspector Glen Channer, who is based at the Stanborough HQ, will be rewarded the
TWO "hero" police officers, who risked their lives to save a student from a blazing inferno after a head-on car crash in Hatfield, are to be awarded royal honours.
Detective inspector Glen Channer, who is based at the Stanborough HQ, will be rewarded the Royal Humane Society Bronze Medal, while Hatfield's Pc Glenn Cook is to be given the Testimonial on Vellum, for saving Manish Bhatia's life.
Manish, 22, was in Suraj Bhayani's Vauxhall Corsa when it crossed onto the wrong side of Comet Way and collided with a van.
The car caught fire and within minutes exploded, killing driver Suraj.
The officers aided lorry driver Martin Gage and passers-by, on the evening of Monday, October 13, to pull the passenger free from the vehicle, seconds before it exploded.
At an inquest in March, coroner Edward Thomas praised the officers' "heroic efforts", but explained there was no way Suraj could be saved "without using serious cutting equipment".
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Manish also added at the inquest that if it weren't for the police officers and passers-by he, too, would have died.
"My thanks go to all what these people did.
"They ignored their own personal safety," he said.
Det insp Glen Channer, who has been at Herts police for over 10 years, told the Welwyn and Hatfield Times: "I'm very pleased and absolutely delighted to be given the award.
"It was a very difficult day to deal with.
"In those situations our training just kicks in. It's our instinct to help."
He added: "I'm very proud, I didn't expect it at all.
"I've had accolades in the past, but this is something different, something definitely to look forward too especially for me and my family.
"It will also be a chance to remember the other poor lad, who we unfortunately couldn't save.