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'I've just set myself on fire' - Woman nearly dies after dress catches fire

PUBLISHED: 16:13 03 October 2019 | UPDATED: 16:50 03 October 2019

Gill Baguley, right, thanked Nicola Ebbs and the EAAA team for saving her life. Pictures: David Bale

Gill Baguley, right, thanked Nicola Ebbs and the EAAA team for saving her life. Pictures: David Bale

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An elderly woman suffered 10pc burns and nearly died when her dress caught fire.

Gill Baguley in hospital. Pictures: Supplied by Gill BaguleyGill Baguley in hospital. Pictures: Supplied by Gill Baguley

Gill Baguley, 86, from Kettlestone, near Fakenham, thanked the East Anglian Air Ambulance crew including doctor Nicola Ebbs for saving her life, on Thursday.

The professional artist, who lives alone and is unmarried, had just finished painting in her studio when she noticed flames on her shoulder.

She said: "I was standing too close to a gas heater and wearing a cotton dress, and the skirt caught fire.

"I tried to put myself out with water, but the fire had reached the middle of my back, and I couldn't reach.

Gill Baguley thanks Nicola Ebbs and team for saving her life. Pictures: EAAAGill Baguley thanks Nicola Ebbs and team for saving her life. Pictures: EAAA

"I thought it not a very good idea to roll on the floor, since I've had a hip operation."

She was able to phone neighbours Bob and Bridget Fielden who rushed round to help.

Mrs Fielden said: "She was really calm on the phone and just said, 'Could I spare a minute? I've just set myself on fire'."

They put the flames out, doused her in cold water, put clingfilm on her burns, and phoned 999.

Gill Baguley, right, thanks Nicola Ebbs and team for saving her life. Pictures: David BaleGill Baguley, right, thanks Nicola Ebbs and team for saving her life. Pictures: David Bale

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Miss Baguley added: "I don't think it registered because I could not see it.

"I thought I would just put Savlon on it."

When the air ambulance crew arrived they gave her strong pain relief drugs, calmed her down, and Mrs Ebbs accompanied her in the land ambulance to Queen Elizabeth hospital in King's Lynn.

She was transferred the next day to the burns unit at Broomfield Hospital, near Chelmsford, where she spent more than five weeks, and had three skin grafts.

She added: "Thanks to Nicola and the team who saved my life."

The pensioner arranged a garden party to raise funds for the air ambulance and presented a cheque for £1,200 to the crew.

Mrs Ebbs, 32, said: "It was one of my first jobs.

"A lot of jobs are emotive and it's great to know you can make a difference. I've got the best job in the world.

""It was a team effort with paramedic Carl Smith, and pilots Richard Anderson and Rob Gleave."

The incident happened at around 12.30pm on February 10.

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