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Photographer Captures Death Of Dalian Oil Spill Firefighter

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

From NetEase:

A photographer captures the death of a firefighter in the Dalian oil cleanup over 334 seconds and 47 photos

Out of curiosity, Zhejiang province freelance photographer Jiang He (pseudonym) happened to capture in his sights Dalian firefighter Zhang Liang in the ocean participating in the [oil] cleanup. Jiang He says, “[I] didn’t imagine that he would die.” 334 seconds, 47 photographs later, the only thing remaining in the lens of Jiang He’s camera from on high was a black hand slowly sinking into the ocean.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

While Greenpeace was at Dalian investigating the oil leak situation, photographer Jiang He by chance captured Dalian firefighter Zhang He participating in the cleanup efforts in the ocean, and recorded the final moments of Zhang He’s sacrificed life.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

The two firefighters are cleaning a water pump in the ocean.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zhang Liang uses effort to cut a rope line between the floating pump and a fishing boat.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zhang Liang and Han Xiaoxiong continually enter the water to clean the litter in the pump.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zhang Liang throws away his knife.

2x

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zhang Liang uses his finger to point towards deeper water, signaling to push the floatng pump out to deeper waters.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zhang Liang appears to have been strongly pushed by someone, his entire person separated from the floating pump.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zhang Liang separated from the floating pump.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

The two firmly “stuck” to the jet-black ocean surface by the oil.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

The two sinking deeper and deeper.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Half of Zhang Liang’s face has been swallowed by the oil.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Half of Zhang Liang’s face has been swallowed by the oil, his eyes tightly shut, grimacing.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zhang Liang’s grimacing.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

A soldier wearing camouflage with his arms outstretched.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zheng Zhanhong uses his momentum from jumping into the water, using his hands to swim through the black oil.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zheng Zhanhong using his hands to swim through the black oil.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zhang Liang’s head completely sinks below the layer of oil.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Han Xiaoxiong tightly grips Zhang Liang’s black hand.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Han Xiaoxiong raises Zhang Liang’s hand out of the water surface.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

This black hand begins to slowly sink.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Han Xiaoxiong tries to pull Zhang Liang up again.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zhang Liang’s hand sinks into the ocean.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

The two struggle to swim towards the small boat in the thick oil.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Zheng Zhanhong and Han Xiaoxiong follow the current and climb onto the fishing boat.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Boarding the small boat.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Helping Han Xiaoxiong board the boat.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

The two men, completely covered in oil, frantically scream into the black oil.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Completely covered in oil.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Anxious people on the shore.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Completely covered in oil.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

The little boat heads towards the shore.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

The little boat reaches the shore.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Rescuing the unconscious Han Xiaoxiong.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Han Xiaoxiong rescued onto shore.

Chinese firefighter drowns before the camera in the 2010 Dalian oil spill.

Comments from NetEase:

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网易贵州贵阳网友:

There was “334 seconds” to take photos and yet no time to go save him???
“334 seconds” = 5 minutes and 34 seconds. There are many things that could have been done!!!

网易山东烟台网友:

China lacks professional special operations divisions and equipment, therefore leading to this kind of tragedy. So sad!

网易上海网友:

This kind of scene would be better not shown, at least out of respect for the victim!

网易海南儋州网友:

How come [they] didn’t even bring a lifesaver or a safety-line??

网易山东济南网友:

Your death was a little unjust [something that should not have happened]!

网易江苏苏州网友:

Our simple and innocent working people, you all are the most beautiful people in the world. Often watching you all working busily for a living, I feel truly sorrowful. I love you all.

Written by Fauna

Fauna is a mysterious young Shanghainese girl who lives in the only place a Shanghainese person would ever want to live: Shanghai. In mid-2008, she started chinaSMACK to combine her hobby of browsing Chinese internet forums with her goal of improving her English. Through her tireless translation of popular Chinese internet news and phenomenon, her English has apparently gotten dramatically better. At least, reading and writing-wise. Unfortunately, she's still not confident enough to have written this bio, about herself, by herself.

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