FOX 8 Defenders: Man reaches out after falling into uncovered storm drain

Updated: Jun. 7, 2019 at 5:49 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - A storm drain left uncovered for weeks gets fixed after residents reached out to the FOX 8 Defenders.

A man who said he fell in the drain is still recovering.

Edward Simmons said he was cleaning leaves from a storm drain after flooding last month, when the cover suddenly caved in.

"When I cleaned off, I walked on it to get the leaves more from behind, and then that's when this went in. When I walked this way, this tilted and came down on top of me," Simmons said.

Simmons said it all happened quickly.

“I went in there, and my shoulder, and I hit my head, and I was knocked out. Like my colleague came from around the house, he saw me pinned down in there, and he came and shook me and he had to pull me up out of there,” Simmons said

"The cover of the drain had him pinned in the hole, and the hole is at least ten feet deep. So, it was past his head, and lucky I was here to see. If I wasn't here to see, he would've been pinned in the hole, and I would've never knew that he was down in the hole," Kahlei Kalili said.

Kalili said he acted fast to pull the cover off his leg and lift him out.

"I turned into hulk or somebody. Incredible Hulk to move this heavy cover off of him. I'm not that big, you know, I'm slim, but still had enough power and strength to pull him out," Kalili said.

Robert Van Vrancken reached out to FOX 8 Wednesday about the problem, and said a crew with the Department of Public Works came out to fix it Thursday morning.

"I'm glad to see they took action right away," said Van Vrancken, "We were just worried about some kid or somebody falling in this hole, or an adult, and especially at night time, it's dark around here and somebody could get out the car where they parked and go into the hole."

In the meantime, Simmons said he's out of work from his injuries.

“My leg’s messed up, my knee, it fell on here, and cracked a little bit, and re-sprained my knee again. My joints and everything in there. I have to get that re-done,” Kalili said.

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