Man from Hemel Hempstead saves ‘lifeless’ elderly man stuck on M11 hard shoulder during hottest day ever

Shaun pulled over and came to the elderly couple’s rescue after he saw the woman in distress.

Wednesday, 3rd August 2022, 9:43 am
Updated Wednesday, 3rd August 2022, 10:11 am

A man from Hemel Hempstead has been praised for helping a “lifeless” elderly man who was stuck at the side of M11 on the hottest ever day recorded in the UK.

Shaun Smith, 31, stopped on the hard shoulder as he drove down the motorway after finishing his shift at J. Murphy & Sons Ltd on July 19.

Shaun said: “I was approaching an elderly lady and you could see she was really in distress trying to wave down the cars.”

Shaun (pictured) was driving on the M11 after he finished work.

With no thought for his safety, he got out of his car and tried to assist the couple.

The woman, who wished to remain anonymous, explained that her husband, 76, had passed out and she feared for his life as he has a heart condition.

With no air conditioning or battery life on their phone, the woman waved and waited for someone to hopefully stop.

Speaking to the Mirror, the 86-year-old woman said: “I couldn't tell you what it felt like on the side of that motorway. When you're in the car you don't realise how fast people are going.”

Shaun put the man over his shoulder and laid him in the back of his air-conditioned car.

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He explained: “There was just nothing there, it was like he was lifeless.”

After calling the emergency services, Shaun drove the couple back to their house. On the journey there, the man become more responsive and said he felt better with the air conditioning.

The ambulance service quickly arrived and dealt with the man as Shaun fixed the couple’s electricity, which had tripped.

Over the next few days, Shaun was contacted by the couple and their family who thanked him for what he did.

Looking back, Shaun, who now lives in Leighton Buzzard and has a 15-month-old daughter said: “It's quite a weird experience. When that kind of thing occurs you go into autopilot mode. It just happened.”

His cousin, Maggie McCarthy Hind said: “When I heard about this, I wasn’t surprised at all. Shaun Smith, you are a superhero.”