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Portal man trapped underneath home by fallen water heater
Rescued after neighbor discovered him 7 hours later
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A Portal man was transported to a Savannah hospital after being trapped underneath his home by a fallen hot water heater for hours Wednesday.

Leslie Douglas Argyle, 63, of Lakeside Drive, was trapped for about seven hours before a neighbor found him, said Bulloch County Fire Chief Christopher Ivey.

Argyle apparently had water leak issues in his older mobile home and was underneath the home repairing water pipes when the floor, possibly weakened by age and leaked water, gave way and the "very large" hot water heater fell on top of him, Ivey said.

A neighbor, concerned that she had not seen Argyle in some tine, went looking for him and heard him moaning, Ivey said.

Bulloch County firefighters from the Portal fire station and the county's rescue unit responded, along with Bulloch County EMS and Portal Police Chief Jason Sapp, Ivey said.

Argyle was first transported to East Georgia Regional Medical Center, but was taken to Memorial University Medical Center in Savannah Thursday morning. He suffered 13 broken ribs, a concussion and possible hypothermia, Ivey said.

"He was soaked" and the water heater was still on top of him when he was found, Ivey said of Argyle.

Memorial would not release information Thursday about Argyle's condition, and family members were not immediately available for comment. Argyle was being held in the hospital's intensive care unit Thursday.

Holli Deal Saxon may be reached at (912) 489-9414.


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