Newborn Baby Rescued From Storm Drain in South Africa After Being ‘Dumped’

By Tom Ozimek
Tom Ozimek
Tom Ozimek
Reporter
Tom Ozimek has a broad background in journalism, deposit insurance, marketing and communications, and adult education. The best writing advice he's ever heard is from Roy Peter Clark: 'Hit your target' and 'leave the best for last.'
February 12, 2019 Updated: February 12, 2019

A newborn baby girl was rescued from a storm drain by emergency workers in South Africa after a grueling four-hour operation.

Authorities said they were called when residents heard a baby crying from deep within a concrete storm drain in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), on the eastern coast of South Africa, on Feb. 11, The Associated Press reported.

The little girl had been dumped in Newlands East, Durban, according to South Africa’s EWN Eyewitness News, and was airlifted to a hospital where she remains in stable condition.

Infant ‘Dumped’ Down Drain

Rescuers believe the newborn girl was washed 10 to 15 feet down the drain after being “dumped,” according to ABC.

Rescue Care Paramedics, one of the groups that helped to extricate the infant said it is unclear why the baby was thrown into the storm drain and that police were investigating.

KMZ Emergency Medical Services spokesman Robert McKenzie told Eyewitness News, “It’s good news for the ending of this rescue today. We would like to congratulate the rescue personnel and paramedics who worked together to rescue this little girl today. The community was very helpful and supportive, which we are also grateful for.”

The rescued infant is thought to be between one and three days old, according to Fox News.

Dramatic Rescue

After arriving at the scene, emergency responders located the pipe the baby was in, Fox News reported, before digging deep into the opening.

Crews secured the walls of the opening by placing vertical supports along the walls and what appeared to be hydraulic braces, according to a Rescue Care photo published by Eyewitness News.

Witnesses cited by Fox News reportedly observed residents bringing pieces of wood they had ripped from kitchen cabinets in order to support the hole and prevent the sides from caving in.

Rescuers used a chisel and hammer to break into the pipe and rescue the infant. Video from the scene shows the emotional moment that the baby was unearthed from the drain as onlookers cheered.

South African media reported the girl was being treated for mild hypothermia at Durban’s Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital and is expected to be transferred to a different facility.

Baby Rescue During Suicide Standoff

Intense footage of officers rescuing a baby from a car during a standoff with a suicidal armed man has been released by Arkansas police.

Little Rock Police Department released the dashcam footage on Dec. 28, showing the tense moments as they talked down a suicidal father and rescued his 1-year-old baby from the passenger seat.

Farris Deloney, 43, had fired shots following an argument with the mother and had driven off with their daughter, sparking a police pursuit that culminated in the standoff on Dec. 19.

Deloney was charged with kidnapping, aggravated assault, and two counts of endangering the welfare of a minor, according to KATV.

The video shows a female officer climbing into the passenger seat mid-standoff, as officers tell Deloney, “Don’t do it!” The officer emerges a few seconds later with the baby dressed in pink.

According to Little Rock Police, the 13-minute video has been “trimmed for time constraints.” The total time elapsed is not clear, but at one edit point, just before Deloney emerges, the direction of the clouds jumps by around 60 degrees, suggesting a significant length of time.

stand-off
The scene of the armed standoff between police and the driver of the white Mazda on Dec. 19, 2018. (Screenshot/Little Rock Police)

Local reports said that the incident lasted two hours in total—from the time the shots were fired in the parking lot to Deloney’s arrest. The standoff lasted one hour, according to Arkansas Online.

In the video, the officers can be heard pleading with the man not to take his life, encouraging him to think of his daughter, who they call Olivia, and how she will need her father.

Eventually, Deloney gives in, backing out of the car and slowly walking backward toward the officers under their instruction with his hands in the air.

“Through de-escalation tactics and negotiation with the subject, officers were able to remove the child from the vehicle safely and take the subject into custody,” said a Little Rock Police statement.

“The subject was later transported to an area hospital for a medical evaluation,” the statement said.

The Epoch Times reporter Simon Veazey and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Tom Ozimek
Reporter
Tom Ozimek has a broad background in journalism, deposit insurance, marketing and communications, and adult education. The best writing advice he's ever heard is from Roy Peter Clark: 'Hit your target' and 'leave the best for last.'