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Mass. firefighters rescue 6 cold, tired teens near tunnel

Firefighters used a rope to guide the kids to dry land after one of them called 911


Photo/Auburn (Mass.) Fire Department

By Ryan Mancini

AUBURN, Mass. — Auburn authorities assisted a group of teenagers after they became cold and fatigued near a tunnel on Sunday.

The Auburn Public Safety Communications Center received a 911 call at 4:15 p.m. from the teens, who said they were in the area of the diversion tunnel between Curtis Street and Southold Road, according to an Auburn Fire Department Facebook post.

“They had made their way out to the tunnel and became cold and wet and were not able to make it back to land on their own,” the post from Auburn fire officials said.

Auburn Fire said on Monday that the teens climbed down the slope to the edge of the tunnel to play near the shallow water. After getting severely cold and wet, and one teenager showed signs of mild hypothermia, they became nervous and called 911.

Units were en route after they pinged the location of one of the teenagers. Emergency personnel, including a Worcester EMS paramedic according to an Auburn fire tweet, arrived at the teens’ location.

Using a rope, firefighters were able to help the teenagers around the water at the end of the tunnel and on to dry land, according to the Facebook post.

Although mutual aid was requested for one of the teenagers having hypothermia, emergency services were not necessary, Auburn fire officials said.

“They were wet, cold and had some minor scratches but had no injuries and did not require transport to a hospital,” the post said.

Auburn police contacted the teenagers’ families to pick them up, the post concluded.

The National Weather Service last week warned that warmer temperatures can create a false sense of security for recreation in cold water.

“Warm air doesn’t always mean warm water in lakes, streams or oceans,” their website read. “Fifty-five-degree water may not sound very cold, but it can be deadly. Plunging into cold water of any temperature becomes dangerous if you aren’t prepared for what the sudden exposure can do to your body and brain.”

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