As if parents didn't have enough on their minds with all their kids stealing cars and playing with dead squirrels, now they have to worry about vicious, child-swallowing storm drains. Jeffery LaPorta was just being a normal 14-year-old teenager, riding his bike with friends near the edge an overflowing creek when disaster struck. Somehow LaPorta fell into the creek, which swept him into a nearby storm drain.
"The water was moving so quickly it sucked him into the drain," said Doug Turner, a spokesman for the Parma Fire Department. "It sucked him in and pulled him probably 100 yards, full of water, where he couldn't take his breath."
LaPorta held his breath for roughly two minutes while the rushing water tossed him around.
"I was face first, then I was feet first, and then I was side first," he said.
"It was kind of like a waterslide. But like the waterslide was like very, very steep and went about 20 miles an hour."
Eventually, the water level dropped, and LaPorta was able to grab onto a handle in the sewer. But not before he had travelled over 1,500 feet and under a four-lane highway.
"I thought I traveled only 20 feet," he said.
Meanwhile, his friends were freaking out.
"I heard a splash," Miguel, 13, said in an interview. "I ran over to the creek and started looking for him. ... At first I just thought he was stuck underwater or something. I didn't really think about."
But after a while, Miguel knew something wasn't right, so he flagged down a nearby city worker.
"I didn't know what to do at first," Miguel said. "If that city official didn't drive by, I don't know what I would have done."
Rescue workers searched in six different manholes before they heard Jeffrey yelling. All told the ordeal took 43 minutes.
"It's a miracle that the kid was even alive, let alone hardly hurt at all," Turner said.
Jeffrey escaped with only six stitches and an excellent story.
[Image via AP]