NEW YORK — A city worker clearing debris from a drainage pipe in a nearly empty reservoir basin drowned after he was sucked more than 200 feet down the drain, officials said.
Archie Tyler, 43, was standing in about 2 to 3 feet of water as he tried to unclog the drain Friday, Department of Environmental Protection officials said.
When he removed the debris a vortex was created, causing him to lose his footing and get sucked into the 20-inch-wide drainage pipe.
"It's very similar to what happens when you drain a bathtub," said Environmental Protection Commissioner Joel Miele.
The 60-acre reservoir is linked to an upstate aqueduct that provides more than 10 percent of New York City's water.