UPS driver grabs gardening hose, helps extinguish fire at Haverhill home

HAVERHILL, MA (WHDH) - A UPS driver in Haverhill jumped into action Wednesday to save a family inside a home that was engulfed in flames. That family is thankful for the driver’s quick thinking.

Fighting fires isn’t in his job description, but Paul Pereira did not hesitate. He grabbed a gardening hose and is now being hailed a hero.

Pereira took immediate action when he saw the porch of a Hamilton Ave. home in engulfed in flames.

“I just jumped out, ran to the house, knocked on the door to get the people out of the house,” Pereira said. “I asked for a hose and started putting the fire out.”

Brian Lavender says his 21-year old daughter was upstairs at the time. His wife – on the back porch – thought the smoky smell was just someone grilling.

“Knowing my wife and daughter were in the house – in a matter of minutes the house could have gone up in flames,” Lavender said. “We’re just really thankful he was attentive and took the time to come.”

UPS gave its 22-year employee a certificate and gift for his heroics. And the women he helped thanked him too.

“I’m friends with them on Facebook. We’ll keep the friendship going,” Pereira said. “I just feel like I did what anyone else would have done driving by and seeing that happen.”

But Lavender, a grateful husband and father, hasn’t had the chance to pat Paul on the back yet.

“I’d like to take him to dinner, I really would,” Lavender said. “I think that would be nice.”

So he went out, bought a scratch ticket, and he won a $100. He plans to put that towards the dinner.

“Luck is on our side.  We were really lucky, really fortunate to tell you the truth,” Lavender said.

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