Fire crews praised after sewerage drain rescue

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Fire fighters rescued a 21-year-old man who was taken to hospital following an incident in a sewerage drain on the Rathfriland Road, in Banbridge, last Monday.

The man was working as a contractor down a manhole when he was reportedly overcome with fumes and collapsed and was taken to Craigavon Area Hospital, around 2pm on December 22.

The man was unresponsive at the bottom of the 15 foot hole and NIFRS personnel administered oxygen.

Nine fire appliances and a Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service Specialist Rescue Team were deployed to the scene following the incident where a man had collapsed at the bottom of a manhole.

Three Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus rescued the man from the manhole using working at height equipment and working with their colleagues of the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service’s HART (Hazardous Area Response Team team). The man was treated at the scene by Ambulance personnel.

“The man was taken to a nearby hospital following the incident, which finished at 3.01pm,” said a spokesperson for NIFRS.

The man, was initially taken to Daisy Hill Hospital before being transferred.

A PSNI spokeswoman said traffic diversions were put in place during the operation.

The Health and Safety Executive were also informed.

Local UUP councillor Glenn Barr praised the work of the fire crews who helped rescue the man.“I would like to take this opportunity in especially thanking the fire crews for the work they carried out in bringing this to a sucessful conclusion,” he said.

“My thoughts and prayers are with this young man and his family. It brings home the dangers of working in extreme circumstances. I hope the man has recovered and is over this ordeal.”