Austrian swimmer dug himself a hole

May 9, 2011 at 12:05 PM
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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., May 9 (UPI) -- A member of the Austrian Olympic swim team was rescued after being buried up to his neck when sand from a hole he dug collapsed around him, officials said.

Pompano Beach Fire-Rescue spokeswoman Sandra King told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel the swimmer, whose name was not released, spent several hours Sunday digging a 7-foot deep hole on the beach and when he jumped in as a joke the sides collapsed, leaving only his head exposed.

King said it took 60 rescue workers 2 hours to extract the man. She said he was taken to North Broward Hospital to be examined for possible internal injures.

"It was like a turtle," King said, describing the plight of the trapped man.

She said the rescue was tricky because the hole could have collapsed further, burying the man's head.

Several members of the Austrian Olympic swim team have been training in Florida since April, King said.

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