A team of rescuers in India came to the aid of a drowning elephant after discovering the animal face-down in a flooded, muddy pit. The group of people worked together using ropes and their own strength to haul the exhausted animal to safety.
News of an elephant’s plight spread through Dumerta Village in Odisha, an eastern Indian state. The forest and fire departments arrived on the scene, and a large group of local volunteers teamed up to carry forward the harrowing rescue.
Footage from the Oct. 24, 2019, rescue effort shows the elephant struggling to free itself while using its trunk as a snorkel. The distressed animal manages to inhale air above the surface of the water, but its head and most of its body remain completely submerged.
“We found the elephant in a very distressed state as it looked tired,” a forest official told PTI, as quoted by India Times. “We tried to get two JCBs to the spot for digging a path,” they added, “but the heavy machines could not reach near the well because of slushy conditions there.”
The rescue team instead draped and secured a network of ropes around the drowning animal and attempted to lift it out of the muddy water. After many coordinated heaves on the ropes with their bare hands, the team succeeded in dragging the elephant out of the water and onto its side.
The elephant, testing its limbs, kicked furiously, and the rescuers moved away for fear of being injured.
To further help the elephant stand by itself, the team then nudged a thick log beneath its trunk to encourage the elephant to support its own weight. The huge mammal then used the support of the log to scale the final hurdle: standing up.
As the elephant stood, the rescue team dispersed quickly to make way for the animal so that it could exit. The elephant then ran away into the forest beyond, and the crowd cheered with joy in its wake.
The rescue effort, in its entirety, lasted for around two hours.
Allegedly, the elephant was part of a herd of 18 that had been wandering in the vicinity of the village for several days.
After the footage was shared online, many Epoch Times readers left comments on Facebook praising the Indian rescue team for their incredible feat.
“Was so nice to watch this video and these people working so hard to free this poor scared elephant,” one netizen wrote. “God bless all of you!”
“I was holding my breath. What a wonderful bunch of people,” another added. Meanwhile, a third one reflected, “Humans can do a lot when we work together.”
Indian elephants, according to the World Wildlife Fund, always endeavor to be close to a source of freshwater. They can spend around 19 out of every 24 hours feeding—mainly on grasses, tree bark, roots, leaves, and small stems—and can cover up to 125 square miles per day.
The species is listed as endangered with a population of between 20,000 and 25,000 as of 2020. Deforestation has forced Indian elephants to stray onto the farms and settlements that have replaced their natural habitats in search of alternative food sources, where many run into conflict with humans.
The quick-thinking teamwork of the Dumerta Village residents in October 2019, however, saved an elephant’s life and showed just how much can be accomplished when humans and animals work together.
Watch the incredible elephant rescue:
Rescuers save elephant stuck in flooded pit after twohour operation in eastern India
Kind people and onlookers united to rescue a poor elephantCredit: Newsflare
Posted by The Epoch Times on Monday, February 17, 2020
We would love to hear your stories! You can share them with us at firstname.lastname@example.org