A 19-year-old Dartmouth woman is recovering in hospital after a complete stranger rescued her from a burning house.

Her family's home was destroyed by fire early Friday morning.

Jeff Wakeham, 21, said he was driving home with his cousin at about 1:30 a.m. when they took a wrong turn.

"We ended up driving down Valleyfield Road and the mother was in the street hollering that there was a fire, so my cousin stopped and they were screaming their daughter was inside."

Valleyfield Road, NS

The next thing Wakeham knew, he was kicking in the door and crawling through a smoke-filled living room.

"I could see an orange glow coming from the kitchen, I think it was the kitchen anyway. And then I could hear a cough in the corner and I started crawling in that direction," Wakeham said.

"I just remember throwing furniture and tables and stuff out of my way, and I felt her arm or something. So I just pulled her out as quickly as I could."

The young woman was rushed to hospital. Wakeham said her family told him she's going to be OK.

"That was a real relief when I heard that. Her lungs are I guess a little scorched and they have her unconscious, but from what I hear she's going to make it."

The woman's parents were the only other people in the home and they both made it out safely.

"They were pretty terrified and I don't blame them at all. I'd be scared too. I was scared," Wakeham said. "They all shook my hand and gave me hugs and said they were really thankful."

Investigators are looking into the cause of the fire.