UNITED STATES NEWS

Man swept into Omaha manhole during heavy rain was washed down pipes for a mile before rescue

Jul 7, 2023, 9:48 AM | Updated: 3:00 pm

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Firefighters rescued two men who fell into a manhole during heavy rain in downtown Omaha on Friday, including one who was washed about a mile (1.6 kilometers) through sewer pipes before getting trapped behind a metal grate.

The men, who were workers for a private contractor, Ace Pipe Cleaning, were swept into a manhole near the Old Market just after 9 a.m., the Omaha World-Herald quoted Lt. Neal Bonacci of the Omaha Police Department as saying.

One of the men, who was tethered to a safety system, was quickly pulled out. A large-scale rescue effort ensued for the other, who was apparently not tethered. He was found around 10:20 a.m.

The 41-year-old man had extricated himself from the water, but was found behind a metal grate covering a culvert. An Omaha Fire Department crew cut the grate to free him, Assistant Fire Chief Jason Bradley told the newspaper.

He was taken to the Nebraska Medical Center. His name and condition were not immediately released.

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Man swept into Omaha manhole during heavy rain was washed down pipes for a mile before rescue