An ironworker who fell 40 feet from the roof of a manufacturing plant into a tank of acid and was pulled out by a co-worker was in critical condition Monday afternoon, according to his family. Martin Davis, 44, of Avenel, was working on the roof of Swepco Tube LLC, a metal tube manufacturing plant, when he fell into the tank of nitric acid, sustaining burns from head to toe about 8:40 a.m.
Co-worker Rob Knucols, 51, who was on the ground floor, immediately jumped into the vat and was waist high in acid while he and three other roofers pulled the victim out, said Fire Chief Vincent Colavitti, Jr.
Knucols told firefighters after the ordeal: “I had to get him out of there.”
The tank was filled with a 40 to 70 percent solution of nitric acid used in making tubing. Davis was fully submerged in the solution.
“It takes a lot of courage,” Colavitti said of Knucols. “He saw one of his coworkers in trouble and he jumped in after him.