'I Never Dreamed I'd See Daylight Again'

How a woman survived 17 days under factory rubble in Bangladesh
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 10, 2013 2:45 PM CDT
'I Never Dreamed I'd See Daylight Again'
Survivor Reshma Begum lies on a stretcher after being pulled out from the rubble of a building that collapsed in Savar, near Dhaka, Bangladesh, May 10, 2013.   (AP Photo)

When the factory came crashing down around her, seamstress Reshma Begum ran from the second floor, where she was working, to a Muslim prayer room in the basement. When the rubble had stopped falling she found herself alive and miraculously uninjured, but trapped in a wide pocket of open space. Now, after 17 days, she's free to tell her incredible story, the AP reports. "I never dreamed I'd see daylight again," she told a Bangladesh TV station.

Debris fell so close to Begum that it trapped her hair, until she used a sharp object to cut it off. She found nearby stores of dried food and bottled water, both of which she carefully rationed despite the more than 90-degree heat. "The last two days, I had nothing but water," she recalls. She could hear rescue workers above her, and for days tried to get their attention, finally succeeding by banging a steel pipe against the wreckage. Crews had to use welding and drilling equipment to remove the remaining debris trapping her. "We lifted her together with our hands," a rescuer says. "She was baffled as rescuers outside shouted, 'God is great.'" (More Reshma Begum stories.)

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