Body of 10-year-old trapped in concrete pile retrieved after 21 days

January 20, 2023 - 11:16
The body of ten-year-old Thái Lý Hạo Nam was retrieved by rescuers shortly after midnight on Friday.
Scene of the Rọc Sen bridge construction site where the retrieval of Thái Lý Hạo Nam was conducted. — VNA/VNS Photo Nhựt An

ĐỒNG THÁP — The body of ten-year-old Thái Lý Hạo Nam was retrieved by rescuers shortly after midnight on Thursday.

The boy fell down the 35-metre concrete pile 21 days ago, and despite strenuous efforts, rescuers were unable to bring him out. Nam was pronounced dead 16 days ago,

According to the Đồng Tháp Proviince's Police Department, at 1:20am on Friday, two rescue workers climbed down the 25-metre steel pipe that encircled the concrete pile where Nam fell, and retrieved his body using specialised equipment.

As the steel pipe was narrow, rescuers took turns operating the device. The retrieval was completed after two hours.

Nam's body was put into a coffin, and delivered to his home just a kilometre away. At the family's house, Thái Văn Tấn Tài, Nam's father, cried as the boy's remains arrived, while his mother Nguyễn Thị Mỹ Linh wept and fainted. Nam was buried behind the house.

According to Đoàn Tấn Bửu, Deputy Chairman of the Đồng Tháp Province's People's Committee, after 21 days of hard work by rescuers and the collaboration of experts in many fields, the work was completed. Although there were challenges during the rescue process, this was the best possible method to retrieve the body.

According to officials, the pile was separated into three parts, but the last part where Nam's body was located was hard to pull out of the ground due to the swampy environment, as well as the depth of 24m. The rescue team then attempted diving down the pile and retrieve the body, instead of pulling out the pile.

"Despite the long recovery process, the decomposition of the body was slower than normal due to the surrounding environment. The body was intact for burial according to the family's wishes," said Bửu.

Bửu also added that the autopsy results showed that Nam died due to multiple injuries suffered during his fall. The officials organised the burial of the child, and demanded an investigation to find out the cause and punish those responsible if any violations were discovered.

On December 31, 2022, Nam and three other children went to the Rọc Sen bridge construction site in Phú Lợi Commune in Thanh Bình District to collect scrap iron. It was here Nam fell into the concrete pit which was 25cm in diametre and 35m deep.

Rescue work started at noon the same day. Hundreds of people including firefighters and police officers along with rescue equipment like excavators, cranes, and augers were sent to the scene.

Just five days later, on January 4, 2023, Nam was pronounced dead by officials. — VNS