29 June 2022

High drama at Gumly Gumly to rescue man trapped under birthing cow

| Chris Roe
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cow rescue

Rescuers working to free a man trapped under a cow at Gumly Gumly. Photo: Luke Baker (Forest Hill Rural Fire Brigade).

Travellers on the Sturt Highway were surprised to see a large contingent of emergency vehicles heading at pace towards Gumly Gumly on Tuesday (28 June) afternoon.

A half-dozen NSW Ambulance road crews, a handful of police vehicles, the Volunteer Rescue Association (VRA) and the Rural Fire Service all rushed to a property off Graham Ave.

Once on scene, they set to work to rescue a man in his 70s from beneath a large Hereford cow.

According to Angela Buford from NSWRFS, a group had been working in the cattle yards assisting with calving when the accident happened.

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“They were using the chains to try and pull the calf out and it seems the cow didn’t like this and kicked up a stink,” she explained.

“What’s happened is the cow and a gentleman have fallen down an embankment just to the side of where the cattle yard is and the cow has landed on top of him.”

She said it was a challenging multi-person rescue to first free the man and then the beast.

“They’ve lifted the cow enough to get the gentleman out from underneath, and then an ambulance has taken him off for treatment,” she said.

“And then because the cow was still stuck they had to do the secondary lift, which was a more strenuous exercise to actually lift the cow back so it could get back up and into the cattle yards.”

According to a NSW Ambulance spokesperson, the man’s injuries were not too serious.

“Once they released him they found that he had some superficial injuries to his right arm and leg and he was transported to a local base hospital in a stable condition.”

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The VRA confirmed that the joint operation was a success.

“Emergency services worked well as a team and we were able to free the patient,” a spokesperson said.

A photo of the incident taken by Rural Fire Brigade Captain Luke Baker shows rescue crews working down the two-metre embankment where the cow lays on its side amid a tangle of logs.

The team has wrapped the animal and is about to begin the careful move.

Given that the average Hereford cow can weigh over 600kg, it was not a simple operation.

It is thought that both cow and calf were fine following the rescue.

Original Article published by Chris Roe on Region Riverina.

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