William Mason, 40-years old is at the Yuma Regional Medical Center after saguaro, the largest cactus in the country, fell on him.
Officials say that William Mason was responding to an emergency water leak in the Del Oro Estates subdivision in Yuma, Arizona when the 16-foot cactus fell on him. Other members of the water distribution technicians were able to free him and call 911.
His family reports he suffered multiple injuries including a broken back, leg, along with internal injuries and a fever. A total of 146 cactus spines were removed from his body with many more still remaining.
According to his mother-in-law, Caroline Ashley, he was in surgery late Thursday and the extent of his injuries are unknown at this time.
Caroline Ashley told the Yuma Sun the medical team treating Mason includes a pulmonologist, trauma orthopedic surgeon, regular orthopedic doctor, spinal specialist, general surgeon, infectious control doctor and hospitalist.
“We’ll have to see how the surgery goes to learn the extent of his injuries. It was a horrible accident. He’s in very serious condition. We don’t even know if he will live. We’re all praying for him,” Ashley reports.
Meanwhile, City Administrator Greg Wilkinson said in a statement, “Our thoughts and prayers are with Bill and his family. We’re doing everything we can to assist his family.”
Saguaro cactuses can weigh anywhere from hundreds of pounds to more than several thousand pounds, depending on how much water they’re currently holding.