A boy from the Russian Republic of Tatarstan nearly froze to death after his attempts to get out of a manhole he slipped into failed. Help came unexpectedly when a rescue team volunteer fell into the same hole.
After leaving to zip around in a snow sled, the boy named Bulat triggered a search operation in which over 100 people set out to look for him after he disappeared in the village of Cheremshan on December, 24. “I thought I wouldn’t get out when I fell there,” the boy said, recalling his fall into the three-meter sewer.
Bulat shouted for help, but soon realized that no one could hear him. “So I decided to climb on the sled and scramble up. There was 20 centimeters left, but I couldn’t make it, so I started to scream again.” The boy was crying for help until late evening, when he grew weary and fell asleep.
Meanwhile, rescuers and some 120 volunteers launched a massive search operation, combing through the village and its surroundings. The quest soon ended with unexpected success, after one of the volunteers fell into the same open hatch.
“I first thought the boy was dead, he was laying like a corpse,” Guliya Yarullina, who injured her back in the fall, told NTV channel. Bulat however woke up when the woman shrieked. “I told him ‘Don’t be scared, we were looking for you and finally did.’ He got happy and started to jump,” said Yarullina.
Suffering hypothermia, the boy was taken to his parents, with medics saying he could have frozen to death within “another hour” in the underground trap.
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