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Police rescue boy trapped inside utility pole in Vietnam

Police rescue boy trapped inside utility pole in Vietnam

Saturday, March 21, 2020, 17:36 GMT+7
Police rescue boy trapped inside utility pole in Vietnam
Seven-year-old Puih Phong is stuck inside a hollow utility pole in Gia Lai Province, Vietnam, March 20, 2020. Photo: Van Giang / Tuoi Tre

Firefighters in Gia Lai Province in Vietnam’s Central Highlands successfully carried out a rare rescue mission on Friday afternoon when they helped a seven-year-old boy get out of an old utility pole after the boy had been stuck there for nearly five hours.

According to the local police, Puih Phong, who lives in Blang 1 Village, Ia Der Commune in Ia Grai District, fell into the hollow utility pole while playing with his friends in Kla 1 Village at around 10:30 am on Friday.

The hollow pillar’s top had been cut off while the remaining part was buried about two meters underground.

Phong’s legs were left bent inside the cylindrical post after the fall so the seven-year-old could not climb out on his own.

Several attempts by the local people over the next two or so hours to help him out were in vain.

He was already fatigued by the time police rescuers arrived due to the crying, high heat, and diminishing oxygen levels.

Rescuers help seven-year-old Puih Phong out of a utility pole in Gia Lai Province, Vietnam, March 20, 2020. Video: Van Giang / Tuoi Tre

The rescuers splashed water onto the concrete post to cool it down while pumping oxygen into the narrow space to calm the boy.

They then dug up the ground around the pole and used a concrete cutter to break open the structure, which required great care so as not to hurt the boy.

By 3:00 pm, Phong was able to stretch his legs inside the pole after the concrete around his knees had been removed. He was then lifted out of the pillar safely.

Phong was then transferred to Ia Der Commune's health center for medical care and is now in stable health.

A police officer holds seven-year-old Puih Phong after taking him out of a hollow utility pillar in Blang 1 Village, Ia Der Commune, in Ia Grai District, the Central Highlands province of Gia Lai, March 20, 2020. Photo: Van Giang / Tuoi Tre
A police officer holds seven-year-old Puih Phong after taking him out of a hollow utility pole in Gia Lai Province, Vietnam, March 20, 2020. Photo: Van Giang / Tuoi Tre

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