EDITOR’S NOTE: A previous version of this story shared incorrect information about the status of the rescue. The information has since been corrected.
POWELL, Tenn. (WATE) — Both people have been freed following a trench collapse at a Powell construction site, Rural Metro Fire said Thursday evening.
Knox County Rural Metro Fire spokesperson Jeff Bagwell said the second man was rescued around 7:57 p.m. Thursday and taken to UT Medical Center in an ambulance. The first man was rescued from the trench just before 6 p.m., he was taken to UT Medical Center via LifeStar helicopter in critical condition.
Bagwell shared that both men seemed to be in good condition when they were uncovered. The first was able to move his arms and legs and the second is said to have refused pain medication according to Bagwell. Both men are in their 30s.
Bagwell shared that the rescue was difficult because the ground was wet and both men only spoke Spanish. Bagwell added that some of the men’s family members came to help interpret. First responders were called around noon to a construction site at East Beaver Creek Drive and Allison Way for a trench collapse. The men were installing sewer lines at the site.
Bagwell said more than 70 first responders were at the scene. The rescuers were using hand tools, ladders and wood planks to distribute weight evenly and reduce the chances for a secondary collapse.