Girl, 12, injured in chicken house collapse

January 5, 2022

A 12-year-old girl was injured Jan. 4 after a chicken house roof collapsed in Ellendale.

Ellendale Fire Co. responded about 3 p.m. after receiving a call that a girl was trapped in a chicken house in the 17000 block of Maple Branch Road, officials said.

Delaware State Police learned that a 17-year-old boy, three girls, ages 12, 14, and 11, a 20-year-old woman, and an adult male were working in the chicken houses on the property when the 17-year-old saw the food and water lines sagging and told everyone to get out, said Master Cpl. Heather Pepper of the Delaware State Police.

As the roof collapsed, she said, everyone got out except the 11- and 12-year-old girls. The boy and the adult man began digging through the debris and found the 12-year-old pinned under the collapsed roof. Crews from Ellendale and the Technical Rescue Team worked to stabilize, cut, and lift the structure to free the patient, and the girl was safely removed, officials said. EMS transported her to a nearby hospital in stable condition, Pepper said. Ellendale officials said the 12-year-old was flown by Delaware State Police Aviation Section to Nemours Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington.

The 11-year-old was not trapped in the fallen debris but was also transported by EMS to a nearby hospital, where she was treated and released, Pepper said.  

The case remains under investigation by Delaware State Police Troop 4 Criminal Investigations Unit, but preliminary findings indicate the roof collapse resulted from snow on the roof. Ellendale officials said the area received about 14 inches of snow.


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