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Firefighters, Good Samaritans rescue lucky ducklings trapped in storm drain

Fire crews and police arrived and used a crane to remove the grate, which weighed a few hundred pounds

By Manuel Gamiz Jr
The Morning Call

WHITEHALL TOWNSHIP, Pa. —  Ducklings waddling with their mother through a Whitehall Township parking lot Saturday morning, dropped into a storm drain while crossing over a sewer grate.

Around 10:30 a.m., two women were driving through that parking lot, next to the TJ Maxx store in the 2600 block of MacArthur Road, when they heard chirping and saw the mother duck and three ducklings standing on the grate. Stopping to investigate, the women peered into the dark storm drain where the chirping was coming from and called for help.

Whitehall police and fire crews arrived and used a crane to remove the grate, which weighs a few hundred pounds.

Whitehall firefighter Matthew Stephen climbed down and plucked one duckling from the drain and and then walked through the dark sewer to another drain. where he spotted the other two.

"They were actually in the end [of the drain] and then I started whistling, and they came down and I picked them right up," Stephen said. "They wanted to get out of there."

Placing the ducklings in a bucket, Stephen climbed out of the drain with them. In the parking lot, the two women were ready with a box, where the ducklings were placed so they could be carried across the parking lot, where their mother and siblings were waiting.

Assistant Fire Chief Don Dreisbach said in the past, firefighters have had to flush water down the drain to push ducklings out. He said water from the drain goes to a retention pond behind the shopping center.

Copyright 2017 The Morning Call

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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