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Female worker hailed hero for saving 900 people in SA factory blaze

A woman has been hailed a hero after she saved almost a thousand of her co-workers lives on a ‘hunch’ during a devastating factory blaze.

The unnamed female employee herded out 900 people from the Thomas Food abattoir in Murray Bridge, South Australia before the building burst into flames on January 3.

She made the difficult call to evacuate the plant before the smoke detectors had even alerted staff – and she has now been labelled an ‘absolute hero,’ The Advertiser reports.  

 

The unnamed female employee herded out 900 people from the Thomas Food abattoir in Murray Bridge, South Australia when the building burst into flames on January 3

She made the difficult call to evacuate the plant before the smoke detectors had even alerted staff – and she has now been labelled an ‘absolute hero’

‘There were 900 people in that facility, we could have been sitting there with 900 funerals,’ managing director Darren Thomas said.

‘It was just a hunch — she was trained and she removed 900 people. She is an absolute, absolute hero.’

The woman has undergone counselling since the blaze as she suffers from anguish and guilt that she could have done more.

But she has been assured by her boss that, without her decisive action, those 900 workers could have perished in the blaze.  

Mr Thomas has also revealed his struggles since his life’s work went up in smoke.

'There were 900 people in that facility, we could have been sitting there with 900 funerals,' managing director Darren Thomas said

‘There were 900 people in that facility, we could have been sitting there with 900 funerals,’ managing director Darren Thomas said

The woman has undergone counselling since the blaze (pictured) as she suffers from anguish and guilt that she could have done more

The woman has undergone counselling since the blaze (pictured) as she suffers from anguish and guilt that she could have done more

‘It’s a tragic event and the one thing I am grateful for is that there were no injuries. It’s a significant event. It’s one of the single biggest claims in insurance outside mining in Australia for over a decade,’ he said.  

The blaze was started accidentally by a worker who was welding and caused tens of millions of dollars worth of damage. 

The Thomas Food boss spoke to the employee who caused the blaze and told him it was simply a ‘horrible, tragic accident’.

His family is now working to rebuild the facility as 900 of the company’s displaced staff are offered positions in Lobethal, Adelaide.

The abattoir employed 1400 staff, processed beef, lamb, goat and mutton and had an annual revenue of more than $1 billion.

The woman has been assured by her boss that, without her decisive action, those 900 workers could have perished in the blaze (pictured) 

The woman has been assured by her boss that, without her decisive action, those 900 workers could have perished in the blaze (pictured) 



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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