Top People Who Have Gotten Stuck in a Chimney This Season

December 17, 2019

Ah, Christmas. ‘Tis the season for twinkling lights, mugs of eggnog, and news stories of people getting stuck in their chimneys. While some of these chimney victims entered intentionally, and others fell in by accident, they all have one thing in common: they got stuck. Below are some of the top chimney stories of the season–so far. 

A 17-Year Old Girl in Phoenix, AZ

Early on in the month, an unnamed teenage girl in Phoenix became stuck in her home’s chimney flue after locking herself out of her home. After finding herself locked out, the girl climbed onto the roof and tried to shimmy down the chimney to gain entry. Luckily, she had her phone with her, and enough room to access it and call 911. Firefighters were able to rescue her without injury—although she did have to spend 45 minutes inside the flue. The local news reported the teenager was soot-covered, but unharmed.

A Would-Be Thief in Tucson, AZ

We’re not sure what it is about Arizona that makes entry-by-chimney so evidently popular, but our second story really does also occur in the Cactus State (it’s actually called the Grand Canyon State, but we like ours better.) 

A vandal attempting to enter a vacant home got much more (less?) than he bargained for when he attempted to enter the home via the chimney flue. Neighbors heard a man’s voice shouting for help, and called 911. Police who entered the home found a man in his mid-30s dangling helplessly from the inside of the home’s fireplace. When firefighters finally rescued the man (using both a push-from-the-bottom, pull-from-the-top method, for those interested), they found that he was in possession of several drugs, as well as several outstanding warrants. 

A Parkour Enthusiast in Denver, CO

26-year-old Dustin Hinkle also took a trip down a chimney this month, while filming an action video on an apartment rooftop. During one of his stunts, Hinkle accidentally broke through a chimney cover and fell a terrifying 40 feet down the incineration shaft. Luckily, a cable broke his fall, and firefighters were able to rescue him by breaking through the brick fireplace. Hinkle was unharmed, although he did have to spend 2 hours in the flue. 

Stay Safe – Clean Your Chimney 

Of course, the only reason we are able to entertain ourselves with these peoples’ predicaments is that all of them were very, very lucky. Unless you are a squirrel or a bird, it’s impossible for you to enter a house through a modern chimney, and if no one is around to hear you call for help, the story could become much scarier.

Therefore, unless you have miraculous Santa-like powers, we advise you to stick to safer methods of home entry, like window smashing or lock-picking. And if you want your chimney to be nice and clean for the teenagers, parkour lovers, and thieves who try to pay you a visit, give our Apex chimney sweeps a call.