Man Cuts Off Arm: 'What Would TV Hero Do?'


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An American man who tried to cut off his arm after it got stuck in a furnace boiler has told how he thought of a 1980s TV action hero before sawing into the limb.


Mr Metz after his ordeal

Jonathan Metz became trapped in his Connecticut basement on June 7 while reaching behind the heater.

When the 31-year-old tried to pull himself free, the boiler only tightened on his left arm, cutting into it.

Mr Metz said 12 hours passed before he asked himself: "What would MacGyver do?" and concluded that amputation was his only chance for survival.

Emergency services, alerted by friends after he failed to go to work, eventually freed him on June 9 - but doctors were unable to reattach his severed appendage.


Richard Dean Anderson starred as TV hero MacGyver

Speaking after his hospital release on Tuesday, Mr Metz told how he initially dismissed the thought of amputation.

"I definitely dithered for a few hours after coming up with the initial idea.

"I thought there must be some other way, so I kind of started looking around my surroundings again.

"Maybe there was something I missed. You know, what would MacGyver do if he were here?"

The MacGyver TV series featured a fictional secret agent, played by Richard Dean Anderson, who always found a way out of tough situations.

Mr Metz said he spent a further six hours psyching himself up for the self-amputation.

His plan was to cut off the arm, run upstairs and put it in his freezer, call for an ambulance, then go to the hospital and hopefully get it reattached.

The American failed to completely cut off the limb but when firefighters ripped apart the furnace with heavy tools, the arm gave way.

Mr Metz's family has set up a website to collect donations to help pay for a prosthetic arm.