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Engineers ‘Went the Extra Mile’ to Save Stranded Turtle

by on August 7, 2019
Keegan Kirwin carried the stranded turtle to the end of the bridge while maintaining safety protocols, then completed the bridge inspection.

It was more than 90 degrees in Oologa, Oklahoma when Keegan Kirwin, engineering principal, Generation, came across an unexpected visitor during an inspection of a bridge on Northeastern Plant's rail spur.

A turtle, far from its home, was trapped between the rails.

Brandon Harrison, engineering pricipal, Generation, was with Kirwin on the inspection and tells the tale of what happened next:

"While performing a bridge inspection on the Northeastern Plant's rail spur, we came across a turtle," Harrison said. "Turtles will occasionally crawl underneath the rails and then get stuck between the rails when they can't climb over top. They often bake in the sun until they perish.

"We were a few hundred feet from the end of the bridge. Being that it was 90-plus degrees, Keegan decided to carry the turtle to the end of the bridge, to a shaded area."

Though Kirwin and Harrison took a detour from their inspection of the bridge to render aid to the turtle, they did not forget safety protocols.

"For safety, we wear harnesses and are tied off to the bride structure the entire time," Harrison said. "This means that Keegan had to go the extra effort of attaching and reattaching his tie off equipment every 20 feet, just to deliver the turtle to safety, then walk back to where we left off in our inspection.

"He went the extra mile to help save the turtle."

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