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Floor gives way, trapping 400-pound man in his home

Rescuers aren't sure whether the disoriented man was stuck in the bedroom floor of his Pasco mobile home for hours or days.

By STEVE THOMPSON
Published October 16, 2003

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NEW PORT RICHEY - A reportedly 400-pound Pasco County man who became trapped in his mobile home when the floor gave way was rescued Wednesday by emergency responders.

"He was pretty much sitting in between the floor joists and couldn't get up," said James Higgins, a Pasco County Fire Rescue battalion chief.

The manager of the mobile home park said the man told him he had been stuck for two days. But rescuers said it was not clear how long he was trapped.

"They would ask him one time and he'd say a day," Higgins said. "They'd ask him another time and he'd say he had been there for an hour."

The manager of the park on Belle Terre Road called 911 when he found the man stuck.

"There he was in that little bedroom sitting in a little hole," said Gene Morton, of Orangewood Lakes Mobile Home Community.

Morton said the man, whom he identified as 61-year-old George Daniels, was conscious but disoriented, sitting with his head bowed.

"I asked him how long he'd been in there," Morton said. "He said about two or three days."

It took about eight rescue workers to get Daniels out of the home in a stretcher, Morton said. "He's one big man."

The floor boards in Daniels' home may have rotted underneath the carpet, Morton said.

Morton said he discovered Daniels after getting a call from one of the man's neighbors. It appears neighbors had known Daniels was stuck for some time but waited to call for help, he said. He was not sure why. One neighbor, 80-year-old Warren Conklin, said he checked on Daniels earlier Wednesday. "I didn't know he was stuck in there," Conklin said. "It looked like he was just sitting there."

Conklin said he asked Daniels if he wanted him to call someone. "He said, "No, no, I'll get up myself,' " Conklin said.

Daniels keeps to himself and doesn't get out much, Conklin said. "He didn't know anybody in the park to talk to. A couple of people, that's about all."


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