It might not happen often, but if we were ever attacked by a violent patio heater, we’d want One Direction’s Liam Payne in the vicinity. He saved his best friend’s life when a fire blazed in his luxury London flat, and has been labelled a hero as a result.

Liam PayneThe 'Payne restrictor'

He was hanging out with his buddy Andy Samuel – an old friend from Wolverhampton – when the patio heater exploded. Payne rushed to Samuel’s aid, put out the flames and doused him with water. According to the burn victim’s step father, the pop star saved his life.

“We are so grateful to Liam because he saved his life,” explained Matthew Baker to The Mirror. “The lantern just exploded as Andy was lighting it and it took the full force of the flames. Liam helped him by beating out the flames and dousing him with water. He acted quickly and swiftly.”

Andy suffered superficial burns to his face as well as 20% burns to his chest legs and arms, but if it wasn’t for the One Direction star’s quick thinking, it could have been a lot worse. “What happened was absolutely awful. My son is very poorly. I’ve spoken to Liam on the phone and he told me exactly what happened,” he added.

Liam Payne FlatThe scene of the dramatic events

“He is very shocked himself. It’s bad enough but it could have been a lot worse.” Andy’s sister Harriet, 12, also paid tribute to the brave 1D singer. She said: “I want to thank Liam for saving my brother.” Another man and a woman living in the same building are said to have suffered superficial burns to their hands.