Incredible moment two French children locked in their burning apartment are saved by jumping 40ft into the arms of rescuers who catch them below
- Dramatic scenes took place in the eastern French city of Grenoble yesterday
- One rescuer called Athoumani Walid suffered a broken arm from catching them
- Walid said he heard the children shouting and rushed towards the fire, adding ‘we really did save their lives!’
Two children have survived after jumping almost 40ft from their burning flat into the arms of rescuers below after their parents locked them inside without keys.
The dramatic scenes of the three and 10-year-old plummeting through the air were filmed in the eastern French city of Grenoble yesterday.
One rescuer, a 25-year-old student called Athoumani Walid, suffered a broken right arm because of the force of the catch, and said afterwards: ‘We really did save their lives!’.
He said that he heard them shouting in Le Villeneuve district of Grenoble, where he lives, and rushed toward the fire.
Pictured: The young child is dangled out of a window (left) of the block of flats before being dropped (right) to the waiting rescuers below in the Le Villeneuve district of Grenoble yesterday, as a fire raged in the neighbouring apartment and balcony
Mr Walid told the Parisien newspaper: ‘I saw the two children screaming. They were at the window on the third floor.
‘There was a lot of smoke, flames, explosions, even inside the building. The children were scared. They were crying.’
The oldest of the children, was heard to shout: ‘We don’t have the keys to go out. We don’t have the keys!’
As thick black smoke poured from the windows, the 10-year-old lowered the younger child out the window by his arms, and then let go.
Pictured: The youngster plummets towards the ground as a group of rescuers wait to catch them from the 40ft drop yesterday in Grenoble, eastern France
Pictured: The rescuers crowd around the child to check they are okay after they plunged 40ft from the burning building in Grenoble, eastern France yesterday
A group of men on the ground then braced themselves, and caught both children after they fell.
Both children were completely unharmed, except for suffering from the effects of smoke inhalation.
Beyond Mr Walid, another man suffered an arm fracture, and the pair were taken to hospital for treatment.
An investigation was launched into the cause of the fire, and to why the parents had left the children, who have not been indentified for legal reasons, alone.
The video of the escape, posted on the Oumsa-Dia Twitter account, has been broadcast all over France, turning Mr Walid into a national hero.