Passerby helps puts out fire with garden hose

Ivan Krippner was riding his bike to work when he saw smoke coming out of a house on Te Anau's Luxmore Dr. He grabbed a ...
Barry Harcourt

Ivan Krippner was riding his bike to work when he saw smoke coming out of a house on Te Anau's Luxmore Dr. He grabbed a hose from next door to help extinguish the fire.

There was "a bit of excitement" on the way to work for Te Anau man Ivan Krippner.

The Wings and Water Te Anau owner and pilot was riding his push bike to work when he stopped to help extinguish a house fire on Wednesday.

Krippner was the first on the scene of the fire on Luxmore Dr about 9am.

Ivan Krippner was riding his bike to work when he saw smoke coming on a house on Te Anau's Luxmore Dr. He grabbed a hose ...
Barry Harcourt

Ivan Krippner was riding his bike to work when he saw smoke coming on a house on Te Anau's Luxmore Dr. He grabbed a hose from next door to extinguish the fire.

Krippner heard the fire alarm going off on his way to work, then saw a passerby looking at smoke in shock.

The smoke looked like that of a barbecue but was coming from the house, he said.

Krippner said he remembered thinking, "this picture doesn't look right, something's not right here".

Ivan Krippner helps to extinguish a fire with a garden hose.
Barry Harcourt

Ivan Krippner helps to extinguish a fire with a garden hose.

It then clicked what was happening, he said.

Krippner, who is trained in first aid, said he used his skills to assess the situation.

He looked around for gas bottles and windows that could explode to make sure it was not dangerous to approach the blaze.

By that time flames were going up the house.

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He then went to the neighbouring house and asked to use their hose to extinguish the fire.

Krippner said he was just doing what he could to help before the professionals arrived about two minutes later.

"It's nothing special.

"That's what I love about this town. If someone needs help then you help," he said.

The volunteer firefighters are the real heroes, he said.

Te Anau Volunteer Fire Brigade deputy chief Neale Sutherland said Krippner was outside with a garden hose when he arrived.

"He did his bit ... he had done what anyone would have done," he said.

"There's always someone wanting to help. There's a lot of good people out there."

Sutherland said it was rare to have passerbys jump in to help, but Krippner was not in any danger on the outside of the house.

The fire was small but had spread into the garage roof space.

No one was home and the fire was put out quickly by the fire brigade, Sutherland said.

It was not the first time Krippner was in the right place at the right time.

About 10 years ago he said he pulled at man out of a burning car and saved his life.

People should do what they can without putting themselves or the public in danger, he said.

"Decide if you can or can't help. Don't make the problem worse."

 - Stuff

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