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Jewelry Store Customer Trapped in Safe Room for 10 Hours Overnight The man was checking his safety deposit box when he got trapped inside the 20-by-40-foot space.

By Sam Silverman Edited by Jessica Thomas

Key Takeaways

  • The 23-year-old man was accidentally locked inside the vault by employees.
  • Firefighters responded to the scene soon after, but freeing the customer proved difficult.

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

A 23-year-old man found himself locked inside a safe room in New York's Diamond District for nearly 10 hours.

The jewelry store customer was checking his safety deposit box in a DGA securities vault in the basement of 580 Fifth Avenue, which houses several jewelry vendors and vaults, at around 8 p.m. Tuesday. Employees locked the door from the outside, not knowing he was inside, according to ABC News.

Once the door was closed, it could not reopen until the following day.

RELATED: Couple Celebrating Anniversary Finds 1.90-Carat Brown Diamond. But How Much Is It Actually Worth?

The 20-foot by 40-foot secure room "was closed by the people that own the vault," firefighters told the outlet. "Once the door is closed after 7 p.m., it locks automatically. It's on a timer mechanism. It does not reopen until a certain time passes."

Firefighters were alerted of the incident and spent 10 hours cutting through 30 inches of concrete, only to be met with metal plating. With torches needed to cut through the metal and the morning approaching, firefighters decided to wait until the doors automatically opened.

The man was freed around 6:15 a.m. on Wednesday.

RELATED: This Founder Took Her Jewelry Blog From Side Hustle to Multimillion-Dollar Company. Here's How She Made The Clear Cut.

He was on the phone with the rescue team during the ordeal and was evaluated and released, according to ABC News.

More than 90% of diamonds in the United States come through New York's Diamond District, located on West 47th Street, between 5th and 6th Avenue, according to the Diamond District's official website. The Diamond District produces $400 million in sales on average daily and generates $24 billion in sales annually.

Sam Silverman

Content Strategy Editor

Sam Silverman is a content strategy editor at Entrepreneur Media. She specializes in search engine optimization (SEO), and her work can be found in The US Sun, Nicki Swift, In Touch Weekly, Life & Style and Health. She writes for our news team with a focus on investigating scandals. Her coverage and expertise span from business news, entrepreneurship, technology, and true crime, to the latest in entertainment and TV news. Sam is a graduate of Lehigh University and currently resides in NYC. 

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