A hero passer-by alerted a sleeping couple to a blaze engulfing their home before leading them to safety.
Station manager Paul Shaw, who led the rescue operation at a house in Staffordshire, said the man 'undoubtedly saved their lives'.
The fire started in a garage at the front of the property in Horsebrook Lane, Brewood, in the early hours of this morning.
The passer-by, who lived in the same street and knew the occupants, spotted the smoke at 2.25am on his way home and roused the couple, who were asleep upstairs, by banging on the front door and ringing the doorbell.
He then called the emergency services before helping the pair, aged 65 and 67, get out of the house via the back door entrance and over a fence, away from the property to safety.
Fire crews from Cannock, Uttoxeter and Penkridge spent almost three hours at the address bringing the blaze under control and making the property safe.
Station manager Shaw said: "This gentleman, who lived further down the lane, just happened to be passing on his way home and spotted the smoke. He was an absolute hero.
"His actions without a doubt saved the lives of the couple sleeping upstairs. "Their bedroom was furthest away from the garage and they would have become trapped by fire and smoke had he not stepped in when he did."
The fire was caused by an electrical fault in one of two ageing freezers that were being stored in the converted garage, he said.
Flames spread to the roof of the house and had partially destroyed the bedroom next door to the sleeping occupants when it was discovered. The garage was destroyed and the upstairs heavily smoke-logged.
Mr Shaw said: "The couple were very shaken to say the least. Their home will be uninhabitable for some time. The message here is to check on your freezers. This is not to say that all old freezers are dangerous but they may be."
He said all electrical appliances can be checked for recall at the following website: http://socsi.in/STdb6 .