CALGARY — A Calgary family says they are still upset after their youngest child fell into a septic tank at a highway rest stop in Saskatchewan.
Trevor Pickersgill, Denaie McCarthy and their three girls were driving to Regina from Calgary last Thursday when they decided to pull into the information centre near Maple Creek, Sask., for a rest.
The girls were playing on top of a septic tank lid, pretending it was a stage.
"All three of them were there and laughing. My older two girls they stepped off of it and my baby fell in and I was right there and I tried to grab her,” McCarthy said, crying. “I remember seeing her fall and seeing her fold up and go in to the water and me scream and my girls, they’re freaking out.”
Pickersgill heard screaming and rushed over. He saw his youngest, 21-month-old Nataya, had fallen almost three metres to the bottom of the tank.
“I jumped in about waist high in sewage water and then she was going through another tunnel and I just got to reach her foot, her leg in time, a couple of seconds later she probably would have been gone for good,” Pickersgill said.
Workers from the information centre called 911 and helped to pull father and daughter out with a rope. They were taken to hospital and were treated for cuts and bruises.
“They checked her out, she had an abrasion in the back and the people that helped us, one of them was a first responder too so a couple of the people helped us out, like extremely well and I’m grateful they were there for us,” said Pickersgill.
Doctors in Calgary say Nataya's parents must keep a close on her for signs of a concussion or bacterial infection from the sewage.
The family says they came forward to warn other parents so this doesn’t happen to them.
The Saskatchewan government has ordered an assessment of all 52 of its septic tanks across the province.
“At this point we don’t have any idea whether it was rusted or worn or broken or tampered with or vandalized or anything like that, we just don’t know,” said Richard Murray with the Ministry of Central Services.