The body of a 25-year-old man, who was trapped beneath a mass of mud after the well he was digging collapsed atop him near the Karikkakom temple here, was taken out after the police, Fire and Rescue Services personnel and local residents toiled for nearly five hours on Wednesday.

Jayan of Kattakada and two other workers were digging a well for a house that was under construction behind the Karikkakom temple. Disaster struck around 1 p.m., when the trio stopped for lunch after digging for about 12 feet. The other two workers had reached the top when the walls of the well suddenly collapsed, trapping Jayan beneath. Though his colleagues tried to remove the mud on top of him, the well kept collapsing, defeating their efforts to rescue him. Fire and Rescue Services personnel from the Chakka fire station too could do little, forcing them to call in additional forces from the Chengalchoola unit as well, apart from policemen from the Pettah police station. An earthmover too was pressed into service, with the compound wall of the adjacent school being demolished partly to enable the earthmover to reach the spot. The collapsing walls of the well were finally held in position using a large iron sheet around 5 p.m., after which the body was taken out around 6 p.m. Jayan was declared brought dead at the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College Hospital. The body was later shifted to the MCH morgue.

Jayan, a bachelor, is survived by his mother and two siblings.