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Woman impaled by umbrella at Alabama beach

Emergency crews said the umbrella became dislodged by a strong gust of wind.
Woman impaled by umbrella at Alabama beach
Posted at 1:08 PM, Sep 01, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-01 15:08:33-04

A woman suffered what was described as a "traumatic" injury on an Alabama beach. 

According to the City of Orange Beach Fire Department, the woman's leg was impaled by a beach umbrella on Monday. The fire department said the umbrella became dislodged by a strong gust of wind. 

Emergency crews were called to assist the woman. They reportedly had to cut each side of the umbrella before she could be airlifted to a hospital in the Mobile area. 

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Deputy Fire Jeff Smith told USA TODAY that this injury was something he had never seen before.

"We train for these type of injuries, but I've been employed here 27 years and we've never had, to my knowledge, anyone impaled by a beach umbrella," he said.

The woman is expected to recover from the injury, officials said. 

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has previously warned about the dangers beach umbrellas can pose. The agency says umbrellas were responsible for two deaths in the U.S. between 2013 and 2018. 

It recommends that the beach umbrella pole be buried at least two feet in the sand and be anchored or weighted down.

Beachgoers are also asked to make sure the sand is well packed around the base of the umbrella.

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