A man in his mid-20s is in serious condition at UMC Friday after being trapped in a tunnel 25 feet underground for more than an hour.
Lubbock Fire Department Deputy Chief Chris Angerer says the man and other contractors were working underground on the Lake Alan Henry Pipeline Project in southeast Lubbock County. When completed, this pipeline will transport treated water to the Lubbock.
The men were removing dirt with a steel bucket, Angerer said, and the bucket was on a rail system. When the system malfunctioned, it shifted off the track inside the trench. The bucket pinned the man against the tunnel wall and trapped his legs.
The man was stuck 80 feet from the opening of the tunnel. The tunnel itself is 72 inches in diameter, tall enough for a man to walk through.
Woodrow Fire Department first responded to the location at E. County RD 7300 and FM 3431 (Olive). More than 48 responders came to assist, including the Lubbock Fire Department heavy rescue team, Buffalo Springs Lake Fire Department, Lubbock EMS, Aerocare, DPS and Lubbock Sheriff's Department.
The Lubbock Fire Department brought a Stokes basket, stabilized the man and lifted him out of the tunnel with a nearby crane at the site.
The man was transported to UMC by Aerocare with non-life threatening injuries.
The City of Lubbock Public Works says construction will be halted until a further investigation is done. The city says this should not delay the project. A subcontractor for Western Summit Construction is responsible for maintaining the equipment, Angerer said.
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