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Sanitation workers in San Bernardino County recover engagement ring from sewer

Sanitation staff recovered a missing engagement ring that was flushed down the toilet in Chino Hills a year ago, and reunited it with its rightful owners.
Credit: City of Chino Hills

SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY, Calif. — Sanitation staff recovered a missing engagement ring flushed down the toilet more than a year ago in Chino Hills and reunited it with its rightful owners.

According to Nicole Freeman, a Public Information Officer for the City of Chino Hills, Chino Hills Public Works staff received a call from a resident in March 2022 whose soon-to-be stepson accidentally flushed his fiancée’s engagement ring down the toilet.

"Once he realized the ring was missing, he did what he could to try and retrieve it, even removing the toilet from the flange," Freeman said.

During a routine sewer maintenance sweep in May 2023, workers discovered a ring and worked to retrieve it.

"Staff who were originally in contact with the resident in March 2022 reached out to the resident to confirm the details of the missing ring, and once it was confirmed, the ring was sterilized and returned to the resident the next day. " Freeman said.

When the ring initially went missing, Chino Hills Public Works Department pulled several stops to help locate the ring, including using closed-circuit television to search the city's mainline to retrieve the ring. 

Staff suspected that since the residence is located at the end of a cul-de-sac, it was likely the ring could not have traveled very far, even with laundry and showers being taken for a couple of days.

The City’s sanitation crew was excited to be able to return the ring to the rightful owners and see the resident’s expression of happiness to have it back.

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