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Trio hailed as heroes for alerting residents to apartment building fire

The three youngsters rushed to the scene of the blaze after a bolt of lightning struck a building in the city of Savonlinna on Midsummer Eve.

 Samu Silventoinen, Eerika Pasanen, ja Sari Veijalainen saivat pelastuslaitokselta tunnustusplakaatit.
Image: Petri Aaltonen / Yle

The City of Savonlinna has commended three young people, Eerika Pasanen, 17, Samu Silventoinen, 22, and Sari Veijalainen,18, for their bravery and prompt action during an apartment building fire that broke out on 26 June, Midsummer Eve.

The three friends were celebrating Midsummer night in their car, when a bolt of lightning struck the roof of a six-storey building nearby. The youngsters rushed to the apartment building and started banging on doors and ringing doorbells to wake the residents.

"We did not bother with division of labour, we just went there," Veijalainen told reporters after the award ceremony, adding that "I only realised the risk that I put on my own life afterwards, but I am happy that the residents made it to safety."

"It was a bit silly, to not really think about my own health. We just had to go there when we saw the smoke coming," Silventoinen added.

The city of Savonlinna awarded the young heroes with scholarships, and the ceremony took place on the birthday of the city of Savonlinna, also known as Saint Olav's day.

The trio were also rewarded by the South Savo Rescue Department, who witnessed the three youngsters in action upon being called to the scene that night.

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