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Teen Lost in LA Sewer in 'Stranger Things' Style Drama, Rescued

Teen Lost in LA Sewer in 'Stranger Things' Style Drama, Rescued

A 13-year-old boy was miraculously rescued after falling into a river of sewage in Los Angeles, getting swept away and spending more than 12 hours in the toxic environment of the city's mazelike underground pipeline system.

Jesse Hernandez celebrates Easter by picnicking and playing soccer and volleyball in Griffith Park, Los Angeles.

Los Angeles officials say the pipe where he fell into was wide enough that Jesse could stand.

"We are so pleased and happy to announce a successful outcome", said Fire Capt. Erik Scott at a pre-dawn news conference.

Crews searched through the night and found the child this morning.

Los Angeles Police Sgt. Bruno La Hoz said that the system was a giant maze and admitted they were not sure where the drain pipe leads.

They narrowed the search area further after noticing the hand markings on the closed-circuit camera feed from inside a pipe.

"Approximately 2,400 feet of pipe had been thoroughly inspected - and the search was continuing - when a maintenance hatch west of the westbound 134 Freeway under the 5 Freeway was opened to insert cameras". Fire-rescue team members provided immediate medical aid and transported the boy to a hospital in serious condition.

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Officials attached cameras to flotation devices, sending them down tunnels 300 feet ahead of rescue personnel.

"It appears he was trying to get out", said LA Sanitation Department Assistant Director Adel Hagekhalil.

"The first thing they heard is, 'Help!'" Hagekhalil said. "As you can imagine, we're overwhelmed with joy".

"The expertise of the Bureau of Sanitation was instrumental in this search", Stewart said.

Firefighters were "also using gas meters and all available equipment to safely conduct this on-going search", the statement said. The fire department told ABC station KABC in Los Angeles that Jesse and his friends had climbed over a chain-link fence near Griffith Park and entered an abandoned maintenance shed.

According to the LAFD, the pipes are four feet in diameter, and are filled with liquid at varying depth of two feet and deeper, sometimes moving at 15 miles per hour.

Rescuers dropped cameras that could float along the bottom of pipes where Hernandez fell.

The fire department was assisted by the LAPD, the California Highway Patrol, Los Angeles City Recreation and Parks, Park Rangers, the Department of Water and Power and the Department of Sanitation.

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