A 13-year-old boy miraculously survived the harrowing ordeal of being trapped inside a toxic sewer for 12 hours. Jesse Hernandez prayed to God to spare his life and waited for rescuers to arrive.
Hernandez fell from a plank and plunged his body 25 feet down the sewer, with pipes of about four feet in diameter. As the water gushed at 15 mph, the teen tried to hold on to the sides of the pipe to steady himself and soon found an area where he could stand in the dark, quiet and smelly site.
The boy was with his family for an Easter celebration when the accident happened. He was playing at a structure near Griffith Park but did not notice that the plank that covered the sewage system was not secure.
His friends informed the adults of what happened and they called 911. It took 100 men from the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) and the city's sanitation department to rescue Hernandez, who was located a few miles away from where he fell.
Workers heard a boy calling for help when they lifted one of the manhole covers. A spokesperson for the LAFD said that it was a miracle Hernandez survived because the sewer had toxic gases like methane, hydrogen sulfide.
"I was praying to God to help me and to not die," the 13-year-old told the press. "I thank God for giving me another chance to live," he continued.
Rescuers brought Hernandez to a nearby hospital to assess his condition. Aside from a few scratches and scrapes, as well as a bump on his head, doctors declared he was fine and was subsequently released. Doctors, however, will continue to monitor the boy's condition to ensure that his exposure to the toxic gases won't have adverse effects.
Relief and joy washed over Hernandez's mom, who is pregnant. Inside Edition also gifted the teenager with a set of clothes and shoes to replace the ones he soiled from the sewer.