Red Cross to honor Pierce County sewer rescuers

Eighteen Pierce County wastewater utility workers will receive the American Red Cross Real Heroes Workplace Safety Award on Fri., Dec. 9 for their roles in saving a man who became trapped in an underground sewer pipe earlier this year.

On March 21, the man was working at a construction site a half mile upstream from the treatment plant when he lost his footing and was swept down the pipe. The workers and several of their colleagues at the plant jumped to action, forming multiple teams to locate the man in the underground network and pull him to safety using their confined space entry training. Thanks to their collective efforts, the man was rescued with only minor injuries. For more information, visit .

The annual Real Heroes event honors ordinary people that have displayed extraordinary courage. The breakfast ceremony will be held at the Hotel Murano Bicentennial Pavilion in Tacoma. The Red Cross Mount Rainier Chapter will present awards in six categories to people in the South Sound area who performed heroic actions in 2011.

“Our annual Heroes Breakfast is an opportunity to recognize those very special individuals who personify the mission of the Red Cross and make Pierce County safe and strong,” said Michael Patton, Red Cross Chapter CEO. “This year’s heroes acted quickly and courageously to save a life, prevent tragedy or give of themselves for the greater good, regardless of personal risks.”

The Pierce County award will be presented in the Workplace Safety Award category, sponsored by the Boeing Company. It is for those occasions when ordinary workers, not professional emergency responders, use their safety training and quick thinking to perform a heroic act while at work. The 18 Workplace Safety Award recipients are all employees of Pierce County’s Public Works and Utilities department.

The annual breakfast raises critical funds to help support local Red Cross programs and services. To learn more about the Red Cross and the Real Heroes Breakfast, visit .

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