LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A 10-year-old boy is very lucky to have a quick thinking big brother. His speedy actions Wednesday night helped keep a really scary situation from turning much worse when that boy caught fire in a freak accident.
It happened around 6:30 p.m. at an apartment building at 44th Street and Elliott Avenue in Louisville's Shawnee neighborhood.
"He was sitting on the third step and they threw the gas can and it was on fire and his head and his shirt caught on fire, his back caught on fire," said Charles Mosby, 13.
Mosby didn't know it at the time, but just below where he and his brother, Solomon, were sitting seconds before that happened, a basement clean out turned dangerous. Arson investigators said a gas can tipped over and a water heater ignited the fumes.
Major Henry Ott with the Louisville Metro Arson Squad said the people in the basement were doing everything they could do to fight the fire, tossing the gas can outside. "They were just throwing things out and when they threw it out, it's a tragic consequence, the kid's coming up the steps and he gets hit with a burning gas can," Ott said.
"I saw him run out into the street, yelling, 'Help! I'm on fire,'" Mosby said. "My mom rushed in to help."
So many of us might panic, but Mosby was ready to help, doing anything he could to save his little brother.
"I took my shirt off and beat the flame with my shirt," he said.
Solomon was badly hurt. Arson investigators said he has second and third degree burns on his back, neck and shoulder, but as he was brought to the hospital, he was awake and talking. Hopefully he should be ok, thanks in part to his big brother.
Major Ott said this was purely an accident and he doesn't think there will be any charges, but he adds it is one of the reasons why firefighters say never store a gas can in your home.
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