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Hero dad leaps into action to stop runaway stolen Yodel van crashing into children

01 Nov 2018, 17:53 ... m-15352333

'There were around 15 to 20 kids around and my daughter was in the car. I had to stop it'

This is the amazing moment a brave dad stopped a van from rolling down a hill and injuring children.

Ali Asghar was driving his three-year-old daughter Amelia home from nursery when he saw a a Yodel van parking up on the corner of Batty Street, in Cheetham Hill.

In dashcam footage, captured from Ali's car, the driver and passenger of the van can be seen quickly jumping out of the vehicle and leave it abandoned on the street.

It becomes clear the driver did not put the handbrake on and the van, which is believed to have been stolen, and it can be seen starting to roll towards Ali's car.

Ali, 28, quickly reverses and rushes from his car towards the Yodel van as it continues to roll down the incline.

He manages to pull open the driver's door and yanks on the handbreak, stopping the van from crashing into children walking home from school nearby.

The vehicle rolled towards a lamp post and Ali was knocked to the floor as the open driver's door bounced open towards him.

The van at the top of the hill - youths can be seen running away from it

Witnesses said the two men from the Yodel van were seen shortly afterwards loading a blue Fiat Punto with parcels at the nearby Queen's Road Metrolink stop.

Police were called to the scene at around 3.30pm on Monday, October 29, but the Fiat fled from the scene.

The Yodel van has since been recovered.

Ali told the M.E.N: "As I arrived to park up at my house I saw the van. Then two white males, aged in their 20s, jumped out of the van.

"I saw the van rolling down towards me. There were other kids on the road as well.

"There were around 15 to 20 kids around and my daughter was in the car.

"I had to either let the van hit me or the kids, or I had to jump in the van and stop it.

"I stopped my car quickly and jumped in the van. I pulled the handbrake on.

"Whilst I was doing it the door of the van hit the lamp post. I fell and I managed to get up. All of the kids started crying."

He added: "I saw the two guys flee in the blue Fiat. They were driving like lunatics. I was concerned about the kids.

He says there were a large number of children around at the time

"I just did it to save my daughter's life and the life of the other kids. It could have hit anyone one or crashed into an oncoming car."

Greater Manchester Police have been contacted for a comment.

A Yodel spokesman said: "We can confirm that a Yodel driver was the victim of a robbery on Monday afternoon on Lackford Drive, Collyhurst, in which one of our vans was stolen.

"We are assisting Greater Manchester Police with its inquiries and would encourage anyone with information to contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

"We would like to praise both the witness of the robbery, who bravely confronted the offenders, and Mr Asghar, who heroically jumped in the abandoned van and was able to avert a possible tragedy.”

A spokesman for GMP said: "Police were called shortly after 3.30pm on Monday, October 29, following a report of vehicle theft on Rimworth Drive, Collyhurst.

"Three men made threats to the driver of a van, before stealing the vehicle. The driver was uninjured.

"The vehicle was later abandoned on Batty Street, Smedley while it was moving at slow speed. A member of the public managed to bring the vehicle to a halt.

"Enquiries are ongoing."

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