A drowning pit bull’s life was saved when it was rescued by a compassionate crew of asphalt factory workers from the Flushing River.
The dog went into the water by the Department of Transportation yard beneath the Van Wyck Expressway in Queens, NY around 9:30 am on Tuesday. She was paddling toward Willets Point Asphalt when a worker noticed her.
Machine operator Felipe Garcia’s attention was caught by DOT workers who were wildly waving to him from the other side of the shore. He ran to get Larry Santana, the plant’s manager.
“The DOT guys were waving to my guys, telling them to look down – and they saw a dog in the water,” Santana explained.
Santana and two other workers, Joaquin Sequen and Tom Piazza, rushed to the water’s edge where they saw the red pit bull struggling to stay afloat amidst wood pilings and cement debris.
“Water was coming up for high tide, and we were afraid she was gonna drown, so we had to act rapidly,” Santana said. “She was barking a little bit, but we had to get her out or she was gonna drown. So me and my two coworkers jumped down there, got some rope, lassoed it around her. We were able to pull her free, and then we pulled her up to safety.”
She was trembling from the cold when the workers pulled her out. They weren’t even concerned about their own safety during the rescue.
“It was something we thought we had to do. We couldn’t leave her. We were afraid she was going to bite us, but we couldn’t leave her,” Santana said. “When we got her out, she ran back down into the water area, and we yanked her out again.”
No one knows why she was in the water or what she was going back for, but the employees saved her and weren’t going to let her risk her life again. They also cared for her until animal control arrived.
“We got some blankets food and water. You could tell she was pretty dehydrated,” Santana recalled. “The cops had a boat and were coming up and down, but we already had her out.”
Workers named her Mia before animal control picker her up and brought her to a Brooklyn center for an evaluation. She was not wearing any tags, but she may have an owner who is missing her.