Man hospitalized after being stuck upside down in pipe

NEW MELLE, Mo. (AP) – A suburban St. Louis man is hospitalized with critical injuries after being trapped upside down for about 26 hours in a 20-inch-wide pipe.

Authorities say 47-year-old Leon Lyke was rescued about 2 p.m. Thursday after owners of a home under construction in New Melle heard him yelling. Firefighters pulled Lyke out of the pipe.

New Melle Fire Protection District Chief Rick Massey told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that Massey, who is about 6 feet tall, was in the pipe to install an aerator as part of putting in a septic tank. Massey says Lyke got too far in and couldn’t get himself out. He was working alone on the home being built in a semi-rural area of St. Charles County. He had left his cellphone in his truck.


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