Officials extricate child after getting stuck in playground equipment

A child got stuck after attempted to climb through a hole at Riverside Park. (Photo: WSET)

LYNCHBURG, Va. (WSET) -- A piece of playground equipment called a "cozy dome" at Riverside Park is now in question after a child got stuck and had to be extricated.

The cozy dome is a piece in an effort for an inclusive playground. It can be used by autistic children, but now it may be removed.

The child attempted to see if he could fit his head and body through the mid-sized hole. He was able to get his head shoulders through, but got stuck when he got to his hips.

The fire department arrived and took all manner of steps to get the boy out, but ultimately ended up cutting the equipment in order to free him.

"We run into situations like this a couple times a year where somebody might be stuck in a railing or a banister or some other type of equipment that you wouldn't ordinarily find somebody stuck in.," said Greg Wormser with the Lynchburg Fire Department.

According to Wormser, it only took a matter of minutes to get the child out.

"We don't believe that he was doing anything wrong. We don't believe that the equipment malfunctioned in any way. It was just sort of a unique circumstance," Wormser added.

The City said they trust that the equipment is safe, so they do not plan to remove it.

The big thing that we're looking for is a choking hazard, where somebody is in imminent danger," said Clay Simmons of Lynchburg Public Works.

Officials believe removing the piece right now could be a bigger hazard than keeping it there.

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