Man rescued after being trapped in basement of collapsed Petersburg home

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Posted at 2:21 PM, Sep 25, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-25 18:25:49-04

PETERBURG, Va. -- An hourslong effort saw a man rescued after he was trapped in the basement of a collapsed home on the 1400 block of Halifax Street in Petersburg.

The man, who was in the home on a construction project, was removed from the structure at 4:35 Monday afternoon, nearly five hours after he became trapped in the basement.

He was taken to a nearby hospital in stable condition, with his only injury affecting a lower portion of one of his legs.

Rescue teams were able to provide medical care to the man while he was trapped.

Fire officials were called to the home a little after 11 a.m. on Monday, after they said an interior chimney collapsed, which brought down most of the first floor while the worker was in the basement.

"We had personnel underneath providing EMS, ALS care under the house during the whole event. As he was under the house, he received medication through IV’s and fluids through IV’s, so he was being cared for medically as they were also trying to extricate him," Petersburg Fire Battalion Chief Christopher Magann said.

Rescue crews worked Monday afternoon to stabilize the home to the point where it was safe to attempt to rescue the man trapped inside.

Nearby residents say the home has been abandoned for many years.

"That house has been abandoned. That house has been open, you know, for moisture. I'm sure everything that could possibly gone up in that house is in that house," nearby resident Tracy Owens-Somers said.

The structure was so unstable, that rescue crews had to work for hours just to stabilize the building so it didn’t fall on crews trying to get to the trapped man.

These teams carry wood with them for situations like Monday afternoon, but after using so much wood, they had to go to a hardware store to buy more for the effort.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email to send a tip.

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