Man Attempts To Saw His Arms Off At Home Depot, Is Rescued By Firefighter

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A man attempted to saw off his arms at a Home Depot in West Covina, Calif. Reuters

A man calmly walked into a Home Depot in Southern California and proceeded to attempt to saw through his arms before being stopped by a local firefighter.

The unidentified man was thwarted by a firefighter while store employees and an off-duty paramedic stemmed the bleeding with makeshift tourniquets, reports United Press International. The man entered the home improvement store in West Covina  around 1 p.m. local time on Wednesday, grabbed a handsaw and attempted to saw through his arms, managing to saw down to the bone.

By the time paramedics arrived, the man was beginning to lose consciousness and officers rushed to stop the massive bleeding. Cpl. Rudy Lopez of the West Covina police told the Los Angeles Times no one had paid attention to the man before the incident and “"He was pretty much intent on doing what he did.”

The man was rushed to nearby Queen of the Valley Hospital and underwent surgery although his condition is currently unknown, notes the LA Times. The Home Depot was closed for the remainder of the day.

One of the shoppers who helped stopped the man was Pasadena Fire Captain Art Hurtado, reports NBC4 News.  Hurtado, a 21-year veteran firefighter, said he was shopping with his wife when he saw what was happening and jumped into actions. Hurtado told NBC4News, “As soon as I threw my keys to my wife, she saw the work and the stride that I had. And she knew, I'm working.”

Hurtado began the attempts to the save the man’s life and coordinated efforts to stop the bleeding. Hurtado began asking for towels and employees and officers began to fashion tourniquets from twine and rope. According to Lopez, “He happened to be at the right place at the right time, probably saved his life.”

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