Police officer awarded for bravery after saving kids from burning coach

Wimbledon Guardian: PC Colin Swan PC Colin Swan

A police officer who rescued children from a burning double decker coach has received an award for bravery from the Queen.

Acting Sergeant PC Colin Swan, of Wimbledon, has been awarded the Queen's Commendation for Bravery, which is given for acts meriting national recognition.

PC Swan, now an officer with Wandsworth Police, noticed smoke pouring out of the coach on the M3 motorway while he was off duty on July 31, 2009.

He pulled his car in front of the coach to bring it to a standstill, realising the rear nearside wheel was on fire.

Once it stopped he ordered all the passengers evacuate, with the coach filled with 66 young children on a day trip to the seaside.

PC Swan went up the stairs to held the children down and pass them off the coach.

Flames began to lick up the side of the coach and an explosion tilted the coach, but PC Swan continued to carry children off the coach.

There was a further explosion as the last of the women came down the stairs.

PC Swan did a final check to see if everyone left the coach, even though the whole of the back of the coach was consumed by fire.

The award will be handed to PC Swan by police commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe.

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