A PENSIONER had to be lowered down on a rope from the upstairs of his house after paramedics found the staircase to be unstable.

Ambulance crews were called to a house in Manley Lane, Frodsham, at 8.20am on Monday, but were concerned about reaching the patient, a man in his 80s who had recently suffered a stroke, because of the state of the stairs.

The assistance of Cheshire Fire & Rescue Service’s Knutsford-based specialist line rescue unit was called upon along with two fire engines from Chester.

Such was the fragility of the interior of the house that pit props had to be used to shore up the first-floor.

The casualty was put on a stretcher and lowered down the stairwell on a line before being handed over to the care of North West Ambulance Service.

Watch manager Chris Rodaway, of Chester Fire Station, said neighbours had raised the alarm because they had not seen the man ‘for a couple of days’. He added: “There was a concern the whole upper floor was going to separate and collapse downwards.”

That’s why the skills of the service’s Urban Search and Rescue Team were required. The team has helped in the aftermath of earthquakes in New Zealand and Indonesia.