WATCH: The moment a man fell in the canal and almost drowned

Two heroes who saved a man from drowning when he fell in the Forth and Clyde Canal are to be put forward for a commendation by police.

Andrew Young (29) and Tony McGoldrick (55) came to the rescue of a 32-year-old who had fallen off the large wooden lock gates at Lock 16 on the Forth and Clyde Canal in Camelon on Friday.

Andrew, from Westquarter, had been enjoying the sunshine when he spotted the man making his way across the gates before dropping around 20 feet over the edge into the deep part of the lock endangering his life.

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Brave Andrew then sprinted to the lock and made his way down the ladder attached to the side wall of the canal after seeing he was in difficulty.

The current was strong in the water making a rescue difficult for Andrew, who suffers from asthma, so he shouted for help as Tony, the manager of Falkirk’s Job Centre, was making his way past while he was out keeping fit on a cycle.

Tony then took over and managed to reach the man, who was unconscious by this time, and pull him to safety by holding on to him and the ladder at the same time until emergency services pulled the man out using a rope some time later.

Andrew said: “I saw him trying to make his way over the gates and thought he would fall by the way he had been walking, but when I realised he had fell into the deep part of the canal I knew he could be in trouble.

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“I went into the water to get him but he was very big and the current was strong. I managed to get him into the life-saving position but I just couldn’t hold on and had reach the side. When I turned back to get him he had been swept away.

“I think he had hit his head because he had a glazed look in his eye. I was shouting at him to kick and grab my hand but he was incoherent. I felt pure and utter panic and I shouted at Tony to come down to try.”

Father-of-two Tony, from Bainsford, said: “I didn’t start swimming until I was an adult but I’m quite a confident swimmer and I knew I could reach him.

“He was floating face down so I knew I had to be quick and I was thinking ‘is this a dead body?’ as I made my way across to him. I flipped him over, he was completely unconscious, and dragged him to the ladder and just held on.

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“Another man, an older gentleman who I met on the path down at the Beefeater, came down the ladder and helped me after a while. Emergency services then started to open the lock to see if that would help but it made the water become even more violent so I had to shout to tell them to stop. It was quite frightening.”

Police say they are recommending Andrew and Tony for a commendation for jumping in to save the man.

A Police Scotland spokesman said: “Police in Camelon responded along with the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service to a lock of the canal, just off Union Road at around 1.30pm on Friday, June 3 following reports of a man in the water.

“The 32-year-old was removed from the water and taken to Forth Valley Royal Hospital for treatment.

“His condition is not believed to be life-threatening and there are no suspicious circumstances surrounding this incident.”