Fla. firefighters rescue woman's finger after rings become stuck

With her finger losing circulation, the woman turned to Delray Beach Fire-Rescue, who had just the tools to help


Lois K. Solomon
Sun Sentinel

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. — It’s not a good idea to give firefighters the finger, although in this case, they weren’t offended.

A Delray Beach woman removed her wedding and engagement rings from her ring finger and placed them on her right middle finger. Then she couldn’t get them off.

Firefighters used several methods, including twisting with dental floss and spraying with WD-40, before using a ring cutter to remove the stubborn rings. (Photo/Delray Beach Fire Rescue)
Firefighters used several methods, including twisting with dental floss and spraying with WD-40, before using a ring cutter to remove the stubborn rings. (Photo/Delray Beach Fire Rescue)

She tried pulling and twisting. She tried greasing the finger with olive oil. She began to lose circulation as the finger became red and swollen. She began to cry.

Then she had an idea: Maybe firefighters have the tools to get it off. So she knocked on the door of Delray Beach Fire-Rescue Station 113, at 667 Linton Blvd.

She arrived with her mother and toddler daughter.

“She was frantic,” Fire-Rescue spokeswoman Dani Moschella said. “Her finger was getting numb.”

The firefighters tried some well-known hacks, including twisting the rings with dental floss and spraying them with WD-40. Finally they went to their trusty ring cutter.

Moschella said the ring cutter is a metal tool with a hook that slips under the back of the ring. The firefighter turns a knob and a tiny saw rotates to release the ring.

Every station has this ring cutter, Fire-Rescue Capt. Kevin Saxton said.

“It’s a very real possibility that someone who injures their hand is to going to need a ring cutter,” he said.

In photos released by Fire-Rescue, the woman, who has not been named, sat in a chair with her right hand posed as though she is getting a manicure. The good news is they freed her finger. The bad: The rescuers had to break both bands, although Moschella said they are easily repaired by a professional jeweler.

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©2019 the Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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