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Off-Duty Pa. Police Save Boy Hanging by Neck from Rope Ladder

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March 6, 2023 Two off-duty West Vincent Township police officers helped rescue an 8-year-old boy who stopped breathing when his neck became entangled climbing down a rope ladder.

By EmilyAnn Jackman Source Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

An 8-year-old boy was rescued after getting tangled in a rope ladder and hung by the neck at an indoor amusement park in King of Prussia, according to reports from NBC10 and CBS News Philadelphia.

West Vincent Township Police Officer John Kane, who was off duty at the time, helped rescue the young boy at the Thrillz High Flying Adventure Park, located 555 South Henderson Road in King of Prussia, Montgomery County, on Saturday afternoon, according to reports.

The officer was waiting for an attendant to help his sons and nephews with a game at the park when an 8-year-old boy climbing headfirst down a rope ladder suddenly became entangled in it and was hanging by the neck, according to NBC10.

The incident became so dire that his head was through the netting and his arms were dangling. Police said he was not breathing at first and was hanging four to five feet above the ground.

People were trying to get him out by untangling the rope, but it was tightly wrapped around his neck, according to Kane.

“He was unconscious, and he was foaming at the mouth and pretty lifeless,” Kane said to CBS. “When you are a father or a mother you don’t want to ever have to see that. You think of your own child being in that position.”

Kane, another off-duty officer, and Thrillz employees rushed to help. Kane grabbed a pocket knife and handed it to a staff member to cut the boy down. He and the other off-duty officer then braced themselves to catch the child as he was being cut loose, according to reports.

Once rescuers cut the boy loose, he fell into the arms of the officers who performed CPR.

“Deputy Chief Cooper and I grabbed him and then made our way off to the exit and I immediately started doing chest compressions and Deputy Chief Cooper gave him a few rescue breaths,” Kane said to NBC10.

After a few minutes, the boy regained consciousness and started speaking.

“Thankfully we were there,” Kane said to CBS. “Right place, right time I guess.”

In a statement sent to the news outlet after the incident, the owner of the park said:

“After our investigation and reviewing camera footage, we can say that the boy was seen climbing headfirst down a rope ladder and became tangled. Within 10 seconds, our safety monitors formed a response team along with off-duty police officers and a nurse who was also on site.”

The young boy was released from the hospital later that day. Investigators said the incident was ruled as an accident.

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