BRADENTON -- A 42-year-old man was hospitalized Monday after dirt caved in on him while working at Bradenton's wastewater treatment plant.
"They had to extricate him out of the hole," said Capt. Dana Tindall, at the scene with the Bradenton Fire Department.
The hole was about 8 feet deep.
Tindall said the man was a worker with a private contractor, not a city employee. His identity was not released.
The man was replacing a valve in one of the underground lines for the treatment basin when the accident happened, Tindall said. The rescue call for the city's water reclamation facility on 18th Avenue West and First Street was received at 12:57 p.m.
Assistant Fire Chief David Ezell said the worker was a critical trauma patient and undergoing surgery for internal injuries at Blake Medical Center.
"He wasn't buried too deeply," Ezell said. "But at least up to his chest area."
Ezell said one or two city workers were in the hole at the time of the accident, but no one else was injured.
"He was the only that became entrapped with dirt," he said.
It took emergency responders and other workers about 10 minutes to dig the man out, Ezell said. The fire department dispatched four units and nine fire officials to the scene, according to a news release.
The accident is under investigation.