Thai elephant and baby saved in dramatic rescue from manhole

Veterinarians and park staff pulled off a dramatic rescue of a pair of elephants in Thailand this week that saw the use of a boom lift, a digger and the resuscitation of an unconscious mother by three people.

The rescue took place in the pouring rain in central Nakhon Nayok province yesterday when a 1-year-old elephant fell into a roadside drainage hole. The distressed mother stood guard over her calf, according to national park staff, but also fell in shortly after she was sedated.

Rescuers used a truck-mounted boom lift to pull the mother out before climbing on top of her to perform simultaneous cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) as a digger cleared away earth so the anxious calf could climb out from the slippery mud.

The calf began suckling its mother, who soon regained consciousness, and both returned immediately to the wild. — Reuters