Fire crews rescue Washington woman after she falls headfirst into toilet

Originally Published: 24 APR 22 14:08 ET

By Zoe Sottile, CNN

(CNN) -- If you think hiking stinks, get a load of this...

A woman was rescued by two fire crews after she fell headfirst into a vault toilet while trying to retrieve her cellphone at a park on Olympic Peninsula, Washington.

The woman in her mid-40s was using an outhouse at Mount Walker, a popular destination for hikers, on April 19, when the accident occurred, according to the Brinnon Fire Department.

A vault toilet is a waterless, non-flush toilet usually placed at outdoor locations like campgrounds -- so named because the toilets store waste in an airtight vault underground.

After dropping her phone in the toilet, the woman disassembled the seat and housing of the toilet in an attempt to reach it, the fire department said on Facebook. She used a dog leash to try to "fish it out," before using it to support herself as she tried to grab the phone.

But the attempt failed, and she slid into the toilet. Fortunately, after 20 minutes inside the vault, she was able to find and use her phone to call 911.

Crews from the Brinnon Fire Department and Quilcene Fire Rescue reported to the scene and pulled her to safety.

According to the fire department, the uninjured woman was washed down and given a Tyvek suit to wear. But she declined any further medical treatment and continued on her way.

"The patient was extremely fortunate not to be overcome by toxic gases or sustain injury," the department said.

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