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Firefighter sets off on foot day before shift to arrive on time

He dodged five to six foot snow drifts during the four-hour slog.

A dedicated firefighter set off the day before his shift and walked more than 14 miles in freezing conditions to get to work on time.

Dan Cheetham, 28, trudged through foot-deep snow from Binbrook to Louth fire station in Lincolnshire a day early because he knew he would not be able to use his car in the treacherous conditions on Friday morning.

He said: “It took about just over four hours in the end.

“The snow wasn’t too bad, it was only a foot deep in most places, but it was the drifts that were about five to six foot that were the worst.

“Apart from that it was a walk in the park.”

Mr Cheetham, a retained firefighter who has been covering for his colleagues in Louth, said they thought he was “loopy” when he arrived and likened him to the abominable snowman because of all the layers he was wearing.

The father-of-one said: “I think any one of them would have done the same thing. We all have a duty of care to protect our community when we can.

“It’s like a kind of reincarnation of the Blitz spirit, almost.

“Everyone in the emergency services family is going above and beyond everywhere.

“In Binbrook alone all my fellow colleagues are doing amazing things making sure everyone’s got fed and got enough gas and electricity.

“Other local people, farmers especially, are going around in 4x4s pulling out cars and trying to clear the snow. It’s nice to see in a world that’s full of division.”

One fish and chip shop in Lincoln, Burton Road Chippy, has been offering free hot meals to emergency services teams as they help those stranded.

Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue’s east division commander, Dave Gilbert, said he was “extremely proud” of Mr Cheetham, adding: “Dan’s probably typical of everybody in the emergency services who will always do the best to get in to work, to help people – that’s the nature of them.”

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