Award for driver who stopped suicide

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A QUICK-thinking passer-by who rescued a suicidal elderly man from gassing himself to death has been awarded a certificate of commendation from South Yorkshire Police Authority.

Tim Parkes was driving along Thornberry Hill Lane, Rotherham, in June when he saw a pensioner acting in what he described as a “strange and confused manner”.

The 80-year-old man was standing by his parked car at the side of the road, handling what appeared to be a vacuum cleaner pipe.

Mr Parkes, of Firbeck, drove to the end of the lane but decided to turn around, fearing the man was in a confused state.

When he returned, the elderly man had attached the pipe to the exhaust and was sitting in the vehicle with the engine running.

Mr Parkes pulled the man from his car and called the emergency services.

South Yorkshire Police Authority chairman Charles Perryman said: “A suicide note had also been left addressed to the man’s family, so I have no doubt that the elderly man would have taken his own life had it not been for the actions of Mr Parkes. His quick thinking and fast responses to a distressing situation helped avoid tragic consequences.”