The Rapid City Fire Department rescued two 13-year-old boys stuck in a mud hole near the new Parkview Drive softball complex on Thursday evening.

The boys were cutting through the construction area to Walmart when an embankment on the edge of a drainage system gave way. The boys slid down the embankment into a muddy pond.

One boy was trapped up to his waist and the second had mud up to his knees, according to Lt. Brent Long of the Rapid City Fire Department.

A third boy summoned help for his friends.

Firefighters laid back boards on the muddy surface to reach the boy caught at the knees. Firefighters secured the boy with a rope and pulled him to safety.

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It took approximately an hour to rescue the second boy, Long said. Firefighters tried scooping away the mud to free the boy without success.

"They ended up using a self-contained breathing bottle to inject air into the mud," Long said.

The air created pockets in the mud, allowing firefighters to pull the boy out a little at a time, he said.

The youth was taken to Rapid City Regional Hospital where he was evaluated and released, Long said.

"As spring-like temperatures are upon us, we need to remember that the soil is unstable," Long said in a news release Friday. "As the ground thaws, it goes through changes that weaken the integrity of the soil. When weight is added to these ledges, the chance of soil sloughing off is great. A person can sink, becoming entrapped by a suction that is created within the mud. Use caution when you are in these situations and have a backup plan."

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Contact Andrea J. Cook at 394-8423 or andrea.cook@rapidcityjournal.com

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