Trapped for Two Days, Man Attempts to Cut Off Arm

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A Connecticut man faced a gruesome decision: attempt to saw off his arm, or stay trapped in a furnace.

Jonathan Metz, 31, was working on the furnace of his West Hartford, Conn. home on Sunday when his arm got stuck and he wasn’t able to pull free. After two days, he noticed a rotting smell from inside the furnace and knew he had to find a way to get out.

So he grabbed nearby tools and started to saw through his arm, starting just below the left shoulder. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to get through his whole arm and had to stop with only some fat tissue remaining. Doctors say that there was likely a nerve in the remaining area, preventing Metz from continuing.

He was finally freed the following day when rescue workers came to his house, alerted by a co-worker who was worried because Metz had missed their softball game. Paramedics then dismantled the furnace, releasing what remained of Metz’s mangled arm and rushed him to the hospital. Doctors were unable to reattach his arm.

Although the self-amputation failed, it wasn’t for nothing. The doctors who treated Metz say that the rotting smell was caused by gangrene. If he hadn’t cut through most of his arm the infection would have spread, likely killing him. (via NBC)