CORINTH – Corinth firefighters rescued a city Sewer Department worker who was trapped in a hole on Tuesday afternoon at the corner of Oak Lane and Magnolia Road.

The worker was stuck in mud and dirt up to his waist, said Corinth Fire Chief Todd Welch. Some of the earth caved in while a sewer line was being worked on, officials said.

The hole was about 10 feet deep where the excavation had taken place to install the sewer line.

It took about 45 minutes for emergency responders to free the worker, Wayne Bennett, from the hole.

He was put in an ambulance to be taken to Magnolia Regional Health Center. He was talking as he was being taken to the ambulance and told rescue officials to call his wife.

Welch called it a “scary situation” and said the worker appeared to be suffering from some pain in his legs.

The time-consuming part of the rescue involved cutting boards to place in the hole to shore up the sides to prevent more of the earth from caving in, Welch said.

Once the dirt walls were secured, rescuers used shovels to dig out the earth around the worker and pull him out.

Emergency officials did a great job responding to the situation, the chief said. Some people who lived in the area helped by providing tools. The city Street Department also assisted.

City Construction Work Supervisor John Michael Tucker said the worker is “lucky to be alive” and said “a lot of people don’t realize how dangerous this stuff really is.”

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