A chimney sweep used his poles to help firefighters rescue two tiny kittens trapped in an underground pipe.
The pair of four-week-old kittens got stuck in the 18ft-long sewage pipe which is 6ft underground in Grays, Essex.
A concerned member of the public heard cat noises coming from underground and called the RSPCA, who in turn called firefighters and a chimney sweep.
David O’Donnell, from Essex & Suffolk Sweeps, used a camera on a pole to locate the kittens.
He then blocked one of the entrances with his pole, allowing firefighters to hose water through the pipe and gently flush the kittens to safety.
RSPCA animal collection officer Anna Glozier said the layout of the drain made it “very difficult” to find the kittens and it took three and a half hours to free them.
“It was great team work by all involved,” she said. “I think these cats have definitely used up one of their nine lives.”
Chimney sweep Mr O’Donnell said: “I’m just glad everything turned out alright for these poor cats.
“I was on my way between jobs but took a detour as I wanted to help in any way that I could.
“It certainly was one of my more unusual days at work.”
The kittens, who were rescued on May 11, are now in RSPCA care recovering from their ordeal.
The charity said it is likely they were strays but if anyone recognises them they can call the RSPCA on 0300 123 4999.
Once the kittens are fit and well they will be able to be rehomed.