King’s Lynn dog owner rescued from storm drain after he breaks ankle jumping in to save pet

Firefighters rescued Mr Stevens from the storm drain. Photo: Denise Bradley

Firefighters rescued Mr Stevens from the storm drain. Photo: Denise Bradley - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2017

A major rescue operation was launched to save a dog and its owner from a storm drain.

Tony Stevens from King's Lynn climbed down a shaft with a missing cover after his dog Bramble fell down it.

But he suffered a broken ankle as he dropped down to reach his pet. Firefighters and other emergency services were quickly on the scene of the incident on Lynnsport Fields, on Saturday afternoon.

An urban search and rescue team was brought in to help extricate Mr Stevens and his pet. Norfolk fire and rescue said the operation took two hours using a giant tripod, ropes and stretcher.

Firefigher Rob Combs, who took part in the operation, said it was an 'eventful' afternoon.

'The cover of the storm drain had come off, most likely through the flooding the night before,' he said.

'The dog fell down it and was paddling, then the dog stopped paddling. He [Mr Stevens] lowered himself and dropped the rest of the way.'

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Mr Stevens's ankle injury meant he had to be lifted carefully up through the narrow drain shaft.

'It was hot, smelly and just took time to set up an appropriate rope line system,' said Mr Combs. 'We wanted to take him out as straight as possible.

'The dog was just walked up the ladder with no apparent injuries. The chap was more than happy, laughing and joking with us.' An East of England ambulance spokesman said: 'Multiple response vehicles were dispatched at arrived on Beulah Street, King's Lynn just after 2.45pm on July 28.

'A man in his 50s was taken to Queen Elizabeth Hospital with an ankle injury.'

Mr Stevens's wife Karen told friends on facebook: 'If your dog fell 25 feet down a storm drain with a missing cover - what would you do? Leave her to drown or jump in after her?

'Well Tony was hero of the day yesterday and managed to save Bramble's life, sadly shattering his shin bone and ankle in the process.

'Emergency op tomorrow for external metalwork to stretch the bone out and then an op in Norwich next week to repair the broken shin bone.

'Bramble is very subdued but doing well so far. Vets couldn't find any internal bleeding. Will keep you posted. Grateful thanks to the 14 emergency vehicles and their teams who helped get them both out.'

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