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In a dramatic rescue, firefighters in the UK used a forklift to lift a horse that had become trapped in a drainage ditch.
The incident occurred about 10:30 a.m. May 16 at Horse Sense Wirral, a sanctuary for horses outside of Liverpool.
Someplace She Shouldn’t Have Been
Amy Pirie, chairman of the horse sanctuary, explained that workers had arrived to discover that Queenie, a 20-year-old horse, had either been leaning over the fence for a “bit of tasty grass” or was “itching her bum on the fence” when it snapped, causing her to fall into a three-foot ditch. Because her back legs were trapped beneath her, she was unable to climb out.
After employees were unable to free her, they contacted Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service.
Firefighters to the Rescue
Firefighters attached straps to Queenie’s belly and used a forklift belonging to a nearby farmer to lift the horse to safety. They had to act quickly and work quietly in order not to frighten the horse, which could cause it to start bucking and kicking while attached to the forklift — potentially dangerous for both the horse and rescue workers.
The horse was sedated as the rescue workers slipped padded straps under the front and back of her belly. The straps were then attached to the forklift, operated by a neighbor, Stuart Jones.
Pirie said she was surprised by how quickly Queenie recovered from the incident because she is “normally a nervy mare”. She was not injured in the incident, although she was a bit “stiff and shaken”.
To see photos of Queenie before, during and after her rescue, click here.