RICHMOND HILL, Ga. (WTOC) - Three workers have been transported to the hospital after working in a manhole, Monday afternoon.
Bryan County Emergency Services and Fire says one worker went down to do some work and was later unresponsive. Another went down to try to get him out, but he became unresponsive, too. A third worker went down, but realized he was going to pass out and was able to get out and call for help.
“There was an oxygen deficiency inside the manhole, so basically, we have to have 21 percent oxygen here on the atmosphere to breathe to survive. Once it gets below 19 percent oxygen, you can go unresponsive. We had real low oxygen levels down inside the manhole," said Deputy Chief Mike Dick, Bryan County Fire and EMS. “Usually, inside of a manhole or any confined space, there are things in there that will pretty much wave out the oxygen. It could be a mixture of a lot of things, but pretty much in any confined space, you’ll find that they can be oxygen deficient.”
One of the men is in critical condition. The conditions of the other two are unknown at this time, but officials don’t believe they are in any serious danger. It’s also not known at this time how long the men were in the manhole.
This happened on Belfast Keller Road, but is not connected to the Bryan County I-95 interchange project. Officials say these workers are not associated with the county, but instead work for a private company contracted by the city of Richmond Hill to lay pipes.
“The unfortunate incident that happened on our job site in Richmond Hill, Georgia, was reported to the appropriate authorities and the matter is still under investigation at this time. I can’t make any further comment at this time except our employees and our employees’ safety are the utmost importance to us," said Ty Tyson, President, Tyson Utilities.
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