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Story: "Life ladder" in Sichuan saves 5 workers

08-18-2010 19:13 BJT Special Report:China Fights Worst Flood in Decades |

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On August 16th, five construction workers who escaped the landslide in the town of Qingping ran into more danger as they tried to bypass a section of swollen water. Heavy waters with a width of more than 10 meters trapped the men on one side. At last, with the help of firefighters, the five workers were moved to safety.

On August 16th, at 6:50pm, a dozen firefighters transported rescue equipment to the danger zone.

At 7:30pm, they made eye contact with the five trapped men.

6 minutes later the firefighters arrived at a section that had a cable already set up that spanned the river. But to rescue the trapped workers, another line was needed. Once that was arranged the firefighters tried pulling the trapped people across the river.

But the flow proved too powerful for this method. The plan was scrapped.

At just after 8pm a second team of firefighters brought ladders to the rescue spot. They connected two ladders together, forming a bridge over the waterway.

One firefighter scrambled to the other side of the river and anchored the trapped worker with the line, while another firefighter stood at the center of the river to ensure the safety of those crossing. The first worker crossed the river shortly after. However, the crossing of the second man proved much more dangerous. As he was readying himself to cross the makeshift bridge, a barrel came floating down the river. The ladder was struck by the barrel, toppling the rescuer into the waters. People from the two sides quickly pulled the worker from the water.

At 8:40pm, all five workers and their belongings were pulled to safety.

Editor:Du Xiaodan |Source: CNTV

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