Person airlifted from garage fire along Laurens Road - FOX Carolina 21

Person airlifted from garage fire along Laurens Road

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Firefighters respond to care fire at Laurens Road apartment complex. (May 7, 2014/FOX Carolina) Firefighters respond to care fire at Laurens Road apartment complex. (May 7, 2014/FOX Carolina)
Firefighters respond to care fire at Laurens Road apartment complex. (May 7, 2014/FOX Carolina) Firefighters respond to care fire at Laurens Road apartment complex. (May 7, 2014/FOX Carolina)
The GHS helicopter lands along Laurens Road. (Courtesy Carlee S.) The GHS helicopter lands along Laurens Road. (Courtesy Carlee S.)
GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

Firefighters and police said a fire at an apartment complex off Laurens Road in Greenville on Wednesday severely injured one man and that quick thinking from a neighbor may have kept an entire building from burning down.

FOX Carolina crews spoke to that neighbor, Charles Garreston, who lives at the Vining's apartment complex.

Garreston said he was in his garage working on his car when he heard an explosion.

"I wasn't sure where the explosion came from at first and when I turned around I saw (the victim) running to me," Garreston recounted. "He was on fire from the neck down to his waist."

At that point, Garreston said he jumped into action.

"I grabbed a bottle of water and poured it on him real quick then got him laid down."

The victim then told Garrison that the garage he was working in was also burning.

"He said the garage is on fire," Garreston son. "So I ran and got a fire extinguisher and put the fire out."

When he came back to the victim's side, Garreston said the man was still burning.

"So I put some more cool water on him until EMS got on scene," Garreston said.

Greenville police shut down Laurens Road between Innovation Drive and Millennium Boulevard so the medical helicopter could land.

Authorities at the scene said the fire started in a garage where grinder sparks ignited the gas can fumes. The victim was taken to the Augusta Burn Center by helicopter and was helped by a resident with EMT training.

Garreston said the victim told him how the fire started.

"He was trying to cut some metal on it back in the gas tank area," Garreston said. "He had the gas tank out, and apparently there were some fumes maybe a little bit of gas left in it and it exploded."

No other details have been released about the fire or victim's condition have been released.

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