Forklift and Crane Used to Transport Obese Man to Hospital

Workers in Saudi Arabia used a forklift to transport a man weighing more than 1,000 lbs. to a local hospital for treatment, according to news reports. Khaled Mohsin Shaeri, who authorities said weighed 610 kg — or  1,345 lbs. — was transported from his hometown of Jizan to the Saudi capital city of Riyadh via a special-equipped military airplane and then off-loaded using a forklift, which then brought him to a hospital.

Because of his enormous weight, Shaeri, 20, had been unable to leave his bedroom for the past two and a half years, but thanks to Saudi King Abdullah, who personally financed the transport operation, he was able to get medical care for his condition. A cousin told Reuters that Shaeri had contracted an unspecified disease when he was a child that caused him to rapidly put on weight, and he soon became bedridden.

Part of His Home Was Demolished to Get Him Out

The transport operation, which was carried out by the Saudi health ministry, was a long and involved process. First, a wall in Shaeri’s second story apartment had to be removed. Then he was placed onto a specially built bed – which had been made for him in the United States — and a crane lowered him to the ground to a forklift. He was then driven via forklift to a nearby air field where he was loaded onto a Saudi Air Force cargo plane and airlifted to Riyadh. There, a second forklift off-loaded his special bed from the plane and transported him to King Fahd Medical City.

Dr. Robert Lustig, an endocrinologist, told CNN that the man mostly likely gained most of his weight through liquid calories due to Saudi Arabia’s notoriously hot climate. Lustig said Shaeri probably would have to lose some weight before undergoing any type of weight loss medical procedure, but Arab News reported that Saudi doctors were planning an operation to “remove excess flab”.

Not Officially the Fattest Man Alive … Yet

At 1,343 pounds, Shaeri may just be the world’s heaviest living man, although the official title is still held by Manuel Uribe, of Mexico, who — according to the Guinness Book of World Records — weighed 1,235 pounds in 2006. Uribe reportedly lost 980 pounds by March of 2012, however. The fattest man in recorded history was American Jon Brower, who weighed 1,400 pounds before his death in 1983, according to Guinness.

According to a report issued by the United Nations, more than 35 percent of Saudi citizens are classified as being severely overweight.