Los Angeles County Fire Department firefighters helped rescue a teenage boy trapped in rubble in Nepal for five days Thursday, authorities said.
Pemba Lama, found under rubble from the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that shook the country Saturday, was rescued by the USAID Disaster Assistance Response Team. Members worked for around six hours, using an excavator, jacks, saws and shovels to free the 15-year-old, the group said.
The LA firefighters worked with counterparts from the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department, who hail from Virginia, during the rescue.
Team leader Andrew Olvera told NBC News that the teen wasn’t crushed by the rubble. The boy had been trapped in a concrete "box" between floors of a collapsed building. He suffered no major injuries, and has been taken to an Israeli field hospital for treatment.
"Search dogs located (the) boy in rubble. He was treated by (the) team doctor and taken to hospital," a Los Angeles County Fire Department spokesman said.
He was pulled from a small hole and was immediately put onto a backboard and moved a few feet away. He was given water and an intravenous drip before being placed in an ambulance. Rescuers told NBC News the teen was conscious and talking.
"It's a miracle, a true miracle," a police force general at the scene told NBC News. "He came out and he's okay!"
The rescue came as the official death toll from Saturday's disaster rose above 5,500.
Over the weekend three Pasadena firefighters and an elite team of 57 LA County firefighters left for Nepal to help in search and rescue operations.
Other local agencies, including the Los Angeles Fire Department, are on standby and ready to go if needed.