Firefighters have some of the most unpredictable workplace duties imaginable. While taming a dangerous wild blaze might be the most notable job they do, their duties extend far beyond firefighting.
Just like members of firehouses around the world, those at West Pierce Fire and Rescue in Lakewood, Washington are rescue professionals. Their efforts on April 24 prove that every life is precious and worth saving.
The West Pierce Fire and Rescue team was called out to a storm drain in Lakewood, Washington.
Firefighters are accustomed to rescue missions. When they’re not pulling someone from a burning building, they’re climbing a ladder to reach a cat stuck in a tree.
But this job was different. Rather than running out of a burning building, or climbing up into a tree, West Pierce Fire and Rescue in Lakewood, Washington would have to plumb the depths of a storm drain.
A group of ducklings had become separated from its mother. Deep down in the drain, the duckling’s cheeping was all the information the firefighters had, as they opened the storm drain and headed in after them.
The nervous mama duck watched from a distance as the firefighters worked to save her babies.
Because the drain was so deep, one firefighter was dangled by his feet to reach the ducklings.
According to the News Tribune, one of the firefighters on the team had to be dangled headfirst to reach the ducklings. With nothing but confidence in his coworker, he started pulling the ducklings out one at a time.
There were nine ducklings in total. All were in good health and were unharmed as a result of falling inside the drain.
But none were happier than the mama duck, who was relieved to be reunited with her little ones again. The entire duck family returned to their home on Hidden Lake.
“It was amazing that all 9 babies and mom were rescued and they are happy at home on the lake now!” Deena White-Christensen, who snapped the photos, said on Facebook. “Thank you West Pierce Fire!”
The ducklings were safely returned to their mother, who was happy to have them back.
Christensen laments not taking a photo of the firefighter being dangled by his feet into the drain, but his heroism wasn’t forgotten.
“With a little help from our firefighters, momma and ducklings made it safe and sound to Hidden Lake,” West Pierce Fire and Rescue wrote on Facebook.
It’s important to remember that these types of rescues are best left to the professionals. Especially in high-risk rescues like this one, observers can immediately call 911 and alert the fire department of the situation.