Episode 9 Real Rescues


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Episode 9

Nick Knowles and Louise Minchin present dramatic events from the work of the emergency services. A hospital team is sent to operate on a man trapped on a building site.


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Transcript


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He can't get to hospital, so the hospital comes to him -

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the builder trapped under six tons of work machinery.

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It's a fight to save his leg and his life.

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And thrown about like a rag doll.

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We meet the woman who had this terrifying boat crash.

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Hello and welcome to Real Rescues.

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The Ambulance Control Centre team here is trained to deal with every

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sort of medical emergency.

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Their resources include ambulances, rapid response cars,

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medibikes and the air ambulance.

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And crucially, the professionals who stay on the line to help

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and reassure the callers.

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Now reassuring the caller could be for a major event,

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as you are going to see.

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We've got some extraordinary stories for you today.

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But also sometimes for very small events,

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an example of which Claire can tell us about now.

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You just had a very interesting call.

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Yeah. It actually came through a different ambulance service,

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but it was picked up in a different area.

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It was a one-year-old girl who got something stuck up her nose.

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-Right. So Mum's in a bit of a panic.

-Mum's in a bit of a panic.

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We actually passed it through to ECP, who works in the control room,

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-which is an emergency care practitioner.

-And who's that?

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That's Julian over there.

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-Over the back there, behind the monitors.

-Yeah.

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He's just talking to them at the moment,

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trying to find out what's stuck.

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And see how we can help them and what resources we can send.

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Or get them to go off to hospital - whatever's necessary.

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See what's necessary. If necessary, take them to hospital.

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If not, just triage over the phone and see what we can advise them.

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Lovely. OK. I tell you what, we'll try and find out, during the course

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of the programme, exactly what that object is stuck up the child's nose.

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Oh, yes we will.

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16-year-old Samantha won't forget the first day in her new job.

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She never got there. She had an accident that was

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so serious it stopped her working anywhere for a long while.

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It's a wet day and PC Derek Hurn is racing through the driving

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rain, after a worrying emergency call has come in.

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A teenage girl has been hit by a bus.

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16-year-old Sam is in a lot of pain.

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Her friend Craig saw it all happen.

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Sam was a bit in front of me, walking across the crossing.

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The bus was...come round the roundabout.

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I shouted out her name and she didn't have time to run or nothing.

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Just hit her and sent her flying.

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I thought, "What's going to happen?

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"Is she going to hit the floor?

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"Is she going to hit another car on the other side of the road?

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"Is she going to die or something?" You just don't know.

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The accident site is very near the hospital,

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so the ambulance crew were with Sam in minutes.

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The scene itself was a bit bedlam, really.

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It was dark, it was raining heavily. And the first impression was,

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I saw the bull's-eye of the windscreen of the bus.

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"Ouch, that must have hurt."

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Sam has been thrown 30 feet down the road.

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The damage to the centre of the bus windscreen shows just how

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heavy the impact was.

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The immediate fear is that she could have neck and back injuries.

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The ambulance crew have already fitted her with a collar

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and are about to roll her onto a spinal board.

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SAM SCREAMS IN PAIN

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Sam is in agony.

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She was complaining of pain in her right leg.

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Our thoughts were possibly a mid-shaft femur break.

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The fear is she has a very serious injury to her thigh bone.

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An injury here can also affect major blood vessels.

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SAM SCREAMS IN PAIN

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There's a possibility of arteries being impaired,

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so that the blood flow couldn't get through to the rest of the leg.

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So the concern is possibly losing the rest of the leg

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if the bloody supply isn't maintained.

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But the force of the collision means the team can't only

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worry about the injury to Sam's leg.

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There could be other injuries that she herself probably wasn't

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aware of because all she could focus on was the pain on her leg.

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We don't know what part of her body hit the bus,

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possibly there could be internal bleeding.

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Sam is being given gas and air for the pain.

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The priority now is to get her off the road as quickly as possible.

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She was cold, she was wet, she was frightened. Very noisy.

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There were lots of rush hour traffic around.

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Police were containing the traffic, but people do get impatient,

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they want to get home from work, so they were coming pretty close to us.

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As the medics prepare her for the ambulance,

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Derek offers to help shield Sam from the rain.

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Sam, I'll do that if you like. Go on, then, you go.

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Now you've got a handsome man. There you go.

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With hospital just down the road, it won't be long before Sam is in A&E.

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And there's just time for Derek to hand over her belongings.

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Sam will undergo a full series of tests and X-rays to see exactly

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what's happened to her leg and whether she has any other injuries.

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Well, Sam's thigh bone was completely snapped in two.

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She also broke her collarbone.

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We caught up with Sam after a long period of recovery.

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A day that ended so badly had started full of promise for Sam.

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I was on my way to my first day of work.

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I was excited, because it was my first proper job, and I looked

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across the road, there was nothing coming, so I started to walk.

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It was raining, I had my hood up, so I couldn't really see around me.

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And I heard my name getting shouted, so I panicked and ran.

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And then I got hit by a bus.

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It felt as if I was underwater and I couldn't see,

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but I could just about hear. Then I woke up on the floor.

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I remember saying, "I have to get to work. I have to get to work."

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And then the ambulance lady said, "You're not going anywhere.

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"You're injured, we're taking you to a hospital

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"cos you've been hit by a bus."

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That's what made it clear that I had been hit.

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SAM SCREAMS IN PAIN

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It wasn't just the pain she remembers vividly.

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It was very wet, it was raining, all my face was...

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I just couldn't really breathe properly

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cos the rain. It was cold, dirty, wet.

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It wasn't very nice.

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X-rays at the hospital showed the full extent of the break to her leg.

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The bones had crossed next to each other sort of thing,

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so it went like that instead of just broke.

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So it made my leg four inches shorter than the other one

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and it was very painful.

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The operation to fix her leg lasted five hours.

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It took me two weeks till I came out of hospital,

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and about 11 weeks to recover fully.

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I've got a metal rod in my leg, in my bone,

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and it's going to be there for life. That's not coming out now.

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Sam's now almost back to normal and has finally started her new job.

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Despite all she's gone through,

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she's just glad she's around to tell the tale.

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All I've done is broke my leg and collarbone, so it's quite shocking.

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The way it hit me, the speed it hit me, that I'm still here.

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Hmm. Now, on Real Rescues,

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we hear the dramatic recordings of actual 999 calls,

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including this one about a builder who has suffered terrible injuries.

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His left leg is trapped under a digger.

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His injuries are so severe,

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an expert medical team has to be flown to the scene.

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His workmate made the emergency call.

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We'll be catching up with Jim a little bit later

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in the programme to find out how he is now.

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I have to tell you, that call was made at exactly 11:11,

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less than 10 minutes later, ambulance and fire crews were on the scene.

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We have Steve and Stephen here from the fire service

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and from the ambulance service.

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Arriving at that scene, a very difficult environment

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because you've got all the rubble, the unstable walls,

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and you've got a guy in very serious pain.

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Initially, when we first arrived,

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our prime example was a dynamic risk assessment, which we quickly did,

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and it became apparent that we had a partial collapse of the building.

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Somebody trapped in the digger,

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and there's always a chance of another collapse in progress.

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So you've got both things on your mind.

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Absolutely, so we quickly have to get a safety officer in place with a

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tabard on to show that he's a safety officer, and then he's at all times

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looking at the building and whether there's any further collapse.

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OK. Your first thought must be towards the patient

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and the fact that he's obviously in terrible pain at that stage.

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Yeah.

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When I arrived, it was obvious that his leg was quite severely trapped.

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He was being supported by two of the fire fighters.

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Which made it difficult for you to give him painkillers.

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It was because we didn't want to move him at all.

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We had to basically stabilise his location, the way he was,

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before we could do anything.

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Because we didn't want to take any risks in moving him.

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The little blue crate that you saw down in that picture is what

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you managed to put under him,

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and your fire service guys managed to continue supporting him.

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Did you have a go at trying to release him at that stage?

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Yeah. The fire fighters stayed behind him at all times,

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so he's there for approximately two hours of the duration.

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We always try and have two plans.

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Our first plan was to use low pressure airbags to put underneath

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the digger to lift the digger off the tracks, but unfortunately that

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didn't work at that time, so we have to try to go on to another plan,

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which we did a bit later on.

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OK. And plan B was to try and cut them away,

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but interestingly, you didn't do that straight away because now that

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you've got him settled you gave him some painkillers, but not much.

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We gave him some pain relief.

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We got a tourniquet on the leg to try and prevent any further bleed,

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but the major problem we had was we were concerned that,

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by actually releasing him from the tracks,

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we might have a catastrophic haemorrhage.

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And obviously that could be life-threatening.

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-So that means life-threatening...

-Yeah, a major bleed, basically.

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So you needed extra medical help then.

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What we decided to do was, we needed a medical team on scene.

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So that when we did move him

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we could actually deal with any eventuality.

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And by medical team, you are talking about anaesthetists...

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Yeah, anaesthetists, doctors and possibly a surgeon.

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We were, even at that stage,

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we were still conscious that we wanted to try and get him out

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completely, but we were concerned about possible major haemorrhage.

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Also the possibility of an amputation as a result, to actually free it.

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There was that at the back of our minds.

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OK. So you sent the helicopter off, which has arrived,

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away to get the medical team and bring them back.

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-You use the time whilst they're away.

-We used the time.

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We thought it would be a good idea... Our next trial was to

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try and use special hydraulic rescue equipment, dedicated cutters

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and a disc cutter,

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which is normally used for heavy duty metal or even concrete.

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So you practise that on the other side of the...

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We practise on the other side, cos we had a bit of time.

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We thought, "We have to practise, because it has to be right."

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If it's not going to work,

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it would only give more pressure to the casualty.

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We did that and it did happen to work.

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So you knew that, when the team came back, the MERIT team

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as it is described, you'd be able to set about actually freeing him.

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So you got him stabilised, bit of painkilling, they've got him

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under control. The MERIT basics team are based at Bournemouth Hospital.

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They attend major incidents, where casualties are either trapped

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or unable to get to hospital in time to be treated.

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They train for exactly this type of incident,

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and we'll be talking to them, and meeting Jim himself, a little later.

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Now it seems like lot of calls come in here from dads, whose wives,

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mothers, whatever, their partner's about to give birth.

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You've had loads of these.

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You've delivered five babies in five months, haven't you?

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When they call, what's it like? What do they say on the phone?

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The first thing, they're so nervous, they just scream,

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"The head's coming out! The head's coming out."

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And obviously that makes me more nervous, and...

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So five in five months. What do you routinely tell the dads?

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Just sort of guide them through it.

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You tell them, "Be ready to catch the baby."

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Sort of talk them through like...names and things like that.

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-"Do you know what sex it is?"

-So try to calm them down.

-Yeah.

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I understand that you had one that was on their way to

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-the hospital, were they?

-I had it in the back of a car.

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She was on the way to hospital

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and just went into labour on the way to hospital.

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Where did she have her baby, then?

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Literally the back of a car in a bus station bus stop.

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And you've had letters from people as well, haven't you?

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I had a really nice thank you letter, saying,

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"Thank you for that."

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They wanted to meet me, which was nice as well.

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That's really lovely. And also, what about within here?

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I gather it's sort of quite competitive.

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When does it actually count that you've delivered the baby?

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-When the baby's fully out.

-Before the ambulance crew come.

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-Yes.

-So well done. Have you got the record so far?

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I haven't, no. I think someone's got seven, or 12.

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Five in five months, Alistair, is not bad. Thank you.

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Now people working at heights have all sorts of health and safety

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equipment at their disposal, not so kids when they climb trees for fun.

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Quite right, too.

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Occasionally things go wrong, though, and it is often left to

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people like critical care doctor Paul Rees to pick up the pieces.

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It's just before 10 at night, and ambulance doctor Paul Rees

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is on a 999 call to an 18-year-old who's fallen out of a tree.

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Apparently he was knocked out

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and is now complaining that he's got poor vision.

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I don't really know what that means,

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other than he's definitely sustained a head injury.

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We'll have to get there and have a look and assess him.

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We know there's an ambulance crew running as well -

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they might well beat us there.

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It's not easy to find their way in the dark,

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but the injured man's mates are waiting for them.

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-How old's your mate?

-Pardon?

-How old's your mate? 18?

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-Is he normally fit and well?

-Yes.

-What was he doing?

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He was up the tree and the branch was loose and he fell out.

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-OK. All right. Snapped.

-Snapped.

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Troy is conscious and breathing.

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Hiya. One of the doctors. How you doing?

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-I'm all right, thanks.

-You feeling any better now?

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Eh...a little bit. Memory's gone more than anything.

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OK. All right. Fine. You got any pain in the neck at all?

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-Erm...no.

-You look a bit pale and pasty to me.

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You always a bit pale?

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-No.

-No. OK. Chest all right? Take a deep breath for me.

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Doesn't hurt when you breathe in? No?

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Tummy all right? OK. All right.

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Paul needs to see exactly where Troy fell.

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-So this lowest one here.

-I think so, yeah.

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-And he just sorted of dropped.

-Yeah, he come straight down.

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I don't know if he hit the bottom of the tree.

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OK. It's hard to know, isn't it?

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He landed hard on this...

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His mate Daniel saw Troy fall.

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I think, given the mechanism of injury, he's fallen out of...

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How high has he fallen? About 12 feet.

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We should probably immobilise him,

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do all the things we would do normally, and give him

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a much more thorough once-over in the back of the ambulance, which

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is somewhere in the streets around us, trying to get into this field.

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Not entirely sure whether or not he's going to need to go to hospital.

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I think my feeling at the moment is he probably is for a short period of observation.

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Paul's keen to get Troy into the ambulance, out of cold.

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But although it's very close, it's having trouble getting close enough.

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The difficulty now is that we've come to the end of the public road,

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the patient's about 200 metres inside a park,

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cos we don't have any access to it.

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So all the grass is all bollarded off so that you can't get in there

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and park up.

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Troy's friends head off to show them the way in.

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Even though Troy got up and walked before help arrived,

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he could still have spinal injuries.

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They need to keep his neck and back as straight as possible.

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So don't twist, we'll do it for you.

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OK. And then, when you're ready, we'll just go down. OK?

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Just gently lay you down.

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That's it, good man.

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Fantastic. Just going to strap you onto this, get you to hospital,

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give you a once-over, hopefully kick you out later on, all right?

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Cos you've had a bit of a bump in the head, it is

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a fair old fall, just do all this as a precaution, all right?

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OK. Good man.

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Let's get a blanket on you, keep you nice and warm, all right?

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In the dark, outside, it's a bit hard to say, hand on heart,

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whether or not he's got any serious injuries.

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So pop him up to the hospital, give him a once-over there,

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and hopefully discharge him later on.

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Still to come on Real Rescues,

0:18:350:18:37

more on the building site accident that sparked this dramatic 999 call.

0:18:370:18:41

We meet the man at the centre of that huge rescue operation.

0:18:510:18:54

And the woman who had two high-speed crashes on water

0:18:540:18:58

and lived to tell the tale.

0:18:580:19:00

She'll be describing exactly what happened just seconds after this.

0:19:000:19:03

Animals and roads don't mix,

0:19:060:19:08

so when a fox suddenly decides to cross the road,

0:19:080:19:10

some drivers like Ashley will go to great lengths to avoid hitting them.

0:19:100:19:15

The ambulance crew are heading to a call out in the east of the county.

0:19:190:19:22

It's a damp and dark morning.

0:19:220:19:24

The police are already on the scene, behind them a four by four,

0:19:240:19:28

which has taken a sudden detour off the road.

0:19:280:19:31

It's now resting at a precarious angle.

0:19:310:19:34

The driver has got herself out.

0:19:340:19:36

The only thing she's complaining of is pain in her arm.

0:19:360:19:39

-She said her right arm felt like pins and needles.

-OK.

0:19:390:19:44

It's cold. And when I got here, her left arm was warm,

0:19:440:19:48

her right arm was very cold.

0:19:480:19:50

-Sort of a slightly blue-y...

-Righty-ho.

0:19:500:19:52

Paramedic Karen Plumley needs to investigate.

0:19:530:19:56

So your shoulder, you've got pain in your shoulder.

0:19:560:19:59

Righty-ho. Any pains in your neck?

0:19:590:20:01

I can see you're moving quite freely around.

0:20:010:20:03

Yeah. No. My neck's fine.

0:20:030:20:05

Can I get you to just stand still, just for a minute?

0:20:050:20:07

-All of that's absolutely fine.

-Yeah, fine.

0:20:070:20:10

And the pain in your shoulder,

0:20:100:20:11

if you had to give me a score out of 10,

0:20:110:20:13

nought being pain-free, 10 being excruciating,

0:20:130:20:16

where would you put your pain?

0:20:160:20:18

-About three.

-About a three, so quite a mild pain.

0:20:180:20:20

It's clear that Ashley is a bit of an animal lover.

0:20:220:20:24

She just dropped her mum home after she had been cat-sitting.

0:20:240:20:28

And it turns out she's just as caring about wild animals.

0:20:280:20:31

In fact, it's why her car ended up like this.

0:20:310:20:35

So how did all this happen?

0:20:350:20:37

I was coming round the corner and a fox ran out,

0:20:370:20:39

and I didn't want to hit it so I swerved slightly and lost control.

0:20:390:20:44

-It looks like you were quite lucky.

-Yeah.

0:20:440:20:46

They don't reckon there's much damage done to it,

0:20:460:20:48

apart from the two tyres.

0:20:480:20:49

Let's go and sit you on the vehicle, out of harm's way.

0:20:490:20:53

Ashley is not the only one to escape relatively unscathed.

0:20:530:20:57

Her passenger joins her for the check-up in the ambulance.

0:20:570:21:00

Hello, chappy.

0:21:000:21:02

-What's this young man's name?

-Her name.

0:21:020:21:04

-Oh, her name.

-Josie.

-Josie.

0:21:040:21:07

Her collar says, "It's not easy being a princess."

0:21:070:21:10

You're making our vehicle all muddy.

0:21:100:21:13

Once the introductions are over,

0:21:130:21:14

Karen gives Ashley's shoulder a thorough examination.

0:21:140:21:18

Whereabouts does it actually hurt?

0:21:180:21:20

From about there downwards.

0:21:200:21:23

Righty-ho, so you've got quite good range of movement there,

0:21:230:21:26

-haven't you?

-Yeah.

0:21:260:21:29

Although Ashley and Josie have escaped almost unharmed,

0:21:290:21:32

it could have been a different story.

0:21:320:21:34

Just a few feet further on,

0:21:340:21:35

and she would have gone straight down into the bed of this stream.

0:21:350:21:38

It's quite a big, steep drop, isn't it?

0:21:390:21:42

So very lucky, aren't you?

0:21:420:21:45

So the driver survived and the dog's unhurt,

0:21:450:21:48

but what about the car, which is still stuck up the bank?

0:21:480:21:51

The only obvious damage is to the rear wheels and the tow bar,

0:21:510:21:55

but Ashley's worried that more damage could be done getting

0:21:550:21:58

it off the embankment.

0:21:580:21:59

Is it your baby?

0:21:590:22:01

Yes. And it's normally very good, but it just didn't stop.

0:22:010:22:06

I kept pumping the brakes and it just wouldn't stop,

0:22:060:22:08

it just kept sliding.

0:22:080:22:10

-It's only a bumper at the moment.

-No, it's the wheel as well.

0:22:120:22:16

Yeah...the wheel's going to need replaced. Oh! It's going to go.

0:22:160:22:19

-It's going to go. It's going to go.

-Don't. Don't you do dare go.

0:22:190:22:23

This is more... This is more upsetting than the accident.

0:22:240:22:28

No, she's fine. She's fine. You can look.

0:22:300:22:33

You can look. Look. She made it.

0:22:330:22:35

See that's why people have four-wheel drives, isn't it?

0:22:350:22:39

So they can drive up banks.

0:22:390:22:41

Ashley's most valued possessions have all survived,

0:22:430:22:46

and she's delighted the fox has too,

0:22:460:22:48

although she's well aware it's not always the best thing to do.

0:22:480:22:51

I would have felt devastated if I'd killed the fox.

0:22:510:22:54

It's my personal point of view. I will still swerve to avoid animals.

0:22:540:22:58

But I don't recommend that other people do!

0:23:000:23:02

It is difficult, isn't it, when there's an animal on the road?

0:23:040:23:07

Police advice is to try and avoid them if you can, but avoid swerving

0:23:070:23:11

round them if it puts yourself or other road users in danger. Nick.

0:23:110:23:15

Thank you. Now, let's go back to Jim's horrifying accident

0:23:150:23:18

on the building site.

0:23:180:23:19

A wall has collapsed, half-burying his leg,

0:23:190:23:22

and pushing it into the path of the revolving tracks of a moving digger.

0:23:220:23:26

He's trapped from the knee down.

0:23:260:23:28

This 999 call came in from a fellow site worker.

0:23:280:23:31

It's not just Jim's leg, but his life, in the balance.

0:23:450:23:48

It's become clear that the ambulance and fire crews on site would

0:23:480:23:51

need the highest level of medical expertise to save him.

0:23:510:23:54

I'm very pleased to say Jim has joined us here now, and with him

0:23:540:23:57

is Ed Meekers, who's also from the team that flew into rescue Jim.

0:23:570:24:02

First thing, obviously, how you doing?

0:24:020:24:05

I'm doing fine now. I've started getting there.

0:24:050:24:07

It's a long, hard road, but it's coming good now.

0:24:070:24:10

A horrific accident to be involved in...

0:24:100:24:12

I've been on building sites and...it's just not something

0:24:120:24:15

you expect to happen.

0:24:150:24:17

It was just a really unlucky catalogue of mishaps, really.

0:24:170:24:22

Yeah. It's extremely unlucky, really.

0:24:220:24:24

I mean, there's a billion to one chance of something like this

0:24:240:24:27

ever happening to somebody.

0:24:270:24:28

Because the rubble fell onto the JCB, onto the digger.

0:24:280:24:32

Yeah, and buried me in the rubble and started the tracks moving.

0:24:320:24:36

Extraordinary.

0:24:360:24:37

How soon did you realise that you had a very, very serious injury?

0:24:370:24:41

I realised pretty much straight away that things weren't looking

0:24:410:24:44

too good. I came to terms with it straight away...

0:24:440:24:48

-That you might lose...?

-I sort of...

0:24:480:24:50

I knew straight away that it wasn't going to be good,

0:24:500:24:53

and I thought I'd lost my leg - that was my first reaction.

0:24:530:24:56

We heard your colleague calling the emergency services there,

0:24:560:24:59

but you made a call too.

0:24:590:25:00

Yeah. I phoned my partner Debbie, just to tell her I loved her

0:25:000:25:04

and I told her I thought I'd lost my leg straight away,

0:25:040:25:06

-while I was trapped.

-Extraordinary.

0:25:060:25:08

Now I know for a fact she came down...went to the hospital

0:25:080:25:11

first and then came to the site.

0:25:110:25:12

Ed, you arrived on scene. Who have you got with you at that stage?

0:25:120:25:16

We've got members of the MERIT team.

0:25:160:25:18

We had an anaesthetist with us and we had a casualty consultant,

0:25:180:25:22

as well as a vascular surgeon.

0:25:220:25:25

That's the three of you there we can see in the green helmets.

0:25:250:25:28

That's right.

0:25:280:25:29

You've been delivered by helicopter then brought there by police car.

0:25:290:25:32

He's in a terrible state by the time you get there,

0:25:320:25:34

and they haven't been able to give him a lot in the way of painkilling.

0:25:340:25:37

No. That was one of the main things that we had to do,

0:25:370:25:40

more or less straight away. We gave him some ketamine,

0:25:400:25:43

which is a very strong analgesic painkiller, and also an anaesthetic.

0:25:430:25:48

And you also face a decision then, because his leg is so badly damaged

0:25:480:25:52

you have to decide whether you're going to go for an extraction

0:25:520:25:55

or an amputation.

0:25:550:25:56

Absolutely. That was the one thing we were called out for a possible

0:25:560:26:00

amputation. So, with our colleagues from the fire service,

0:26:000:26:04

we had to recce the site, we had to find out exactly how

0:26:040:26:08

he was trapped and the amount of damage.

0:26:080:26:10

At that stage, make up our mind.

0:26:100:26:13

And you made up your mind to try and rescue the leg.

0:26:130:26:15

Yes. We...the fire service were still trying to get him out,

0:26:150:26:19

to extract him, and to try and get the track off the digger.

0:26:190:26:23

So with the pain relief and the analgesia and the...anaesthetic

0:26:230:26:30

we could give him, that gave us a slightly longer window.

0:26:300:26:35

In the end, the damage was too bad to the leg.

0:26:350:26:37

The damage was, yeah, pretty bad.

0:26:370:26:40

Once you'd had the heavy painkiller,

0:26:400:26:42

that must have been something of a relief.

0:26:420:26:44

Yeah. Pretty much sort of instantly, within a couple of minutes,

0:26:440:26:48

I couldn't feel a thing. After that, I don't remember.

0:26:480:26:51

I remember fully the two hours before, when I was trapped.

0:26:510:26:55

But as soon as I had that pain relief, after that,

0:26:550:26:58

I pretty much can't remember anything.

0:26:580:27:00

Listen, you don't have to answer this,

0:27:000:27:02

but what...where are you, in yourself, now,

0:27:020:27:04

with the loss of a leg? Cos it's something to come to terms with.

0:27:040:27:07

Someone like yourself, who's a builder,

0:27:070:27:09

who's a fit man, who's out there.

0:27:090:27:10

It's really hard work, but you just have to persevere.

0:27:100:27:14

I just consider myself lucky to be alive,

0:27:140:27:16

and that is the main thing, really.

0:27:160:27:18

It's not about being unlucky to lose a leg,

0:27:180:27:20

it's being lucky to be alive.

0:27:200:27:22

So you have to think about it that way, rather than the opposite.

0:27:220:27:24

And that's the way you get through it.

0:27:240:27:26

Obviously you have your bad days, but then you have the good, so...

0:27:260:27:29

And the people that came and flew to your rescue...

0:27:290:27:31

Oh, they're absolutely amazing, they're so professional,

0:27:310:27:34

they know exactly what they're doing.

0:27:340:27:36

All the aftercare, as well, you get.

0:27:360:27:38

All these people that make up the NHS,

0:27:380:27:40

and all the ambulance service and fire crews are absolutely amazing...

0:27:400:27:43

And so say all of us. Lovely.

0:27:430:27:45

Thank you for coming in and chatting to us, Jim.

0:27:450:27:46

Thank you very much, and say thanks to your team, too.

0:27:460:27:49

I want to give you a quick update on what we were talking about earlier.

0:27:520:27:55

Julian, this little toddler who had something up their nose,

0:27:550:27:58

what's been going on? You're getting somewhere with this, aren't you?

0:27:580:28:01

Well, we think so. We've not been as successful as we would have hoped.

0:28:010:28:05

We had somebody on scene with the patient's mother, so we're

0:28:050:28:09

giving instructions to try something which is called parent's kiss.

0:28:090:28:12

So, with a young baby, you occlude one nostril, the good nostril.

0:28:120:28:15

You block one nostril.

0:28:150:28:16

Block the good one, a short, sharp blow into the mouth,

0:28:160:28:19

and, more often than not, it will propel the foreign object out.

0:28:190:28:23

But it hasn't worked.

0:28:230:28:24

It hasn't worked, and I think it's possibly because it's popcorn,

0:28:240:28:28

as opposed to something smooth, like a bead.

0:28:280:28:29

-Popcorn.

-Popcorn up the nostril.

0:28:290:28:32

OK.

0:28:320:28:33

So the emergency care practitioner has tried as well, I understand.

0:28:330:28:35

One of the colleagues has been out,

0:28:350:28:37

he can't do it either, so unfortunately they've won

0:28:370:28:39

themselves a trip up to the A&E department.

0:28:390:28:42

Oh, poor little thing, just because of some popcorn.

0:28:420:28:45

I know, it's very sad.

0:28:450:28:46

Thank you. Let's talk about something completely different.

0:28:460:28:49

To get the best outcome after a stroke, diagnosis needs to be fast.

0:28:490:28:53

When paramedics were called out to an elderly man who had suddenly

0:28:530:28:56

lost his ability to speak,

0:28:560:28:58

they know they have to find out quickly what's wrong with him.

0:28:580:29:01

Ambulance crew Dave Gardiner and Trevor Seaton are on a 999 call

0:29:060:29:10

to a 73-year-old man, who they think may have had a stroke.

0:29:100:29:14

If it's a stoke,

0:29:140:29:15

obviously we have to get him to the hospital quick as possible.

0:29:150:29:17

Due to the fact it's quite a debilitating illness.

0:29:170:29:20

Portsmouth Hospital,

0:29:220:29:23

being one of the leading stroke units in the country.

0:29:230:29:27

A diagnosis will be more difficult because he's a diabetic.

0:29:270:29:30

He could be having a hypoglycaemic attack,

0:29:300:29:32

where his blood sugar levels have fallen dangerously low.

0:29:320:29:36

If it is a hypo, we can give him

0:29:360:29:38

sugars or perhaps have to put an IV line in, give him IV glucose,

0:29:380:29:45

just to bring his sugar level up, and then the difference

0:29:450:29:49

you'll see in someone within a few minutes is quite remarkable, really.

0:29:490:29:52

Raymond has been out shopping all morning.

0:29:540:29:57

His problem started just after having lunch with his wife Helen

0:29:570:30:00

and her mother. Helen was quick to spot that he wasn't his normal self.

0:30:000:30:05

I suddenly realised he wasn't speaking,

0:30:050:30:07

he was just grunting and making noises.

0:30:070:30:10

He wasn't....he wasn't completing his sentences.

0:30:100:30:14

OK. Any other change at all?

0:30:140:30:17

Um...no. He's walking around all right.

0:30:170:30:19

He doesn't seem to realise that there is anything wrong.

0:30:190:30:22

Raymond's mouth is dropping on one side,

0:30:220:30:25

which could be a sign of a stroke.

0:30:250:30:27

Give me a smile.

0:30:270:30:29

OK.

0:30:300:30:31

Put his hands out.

0:30:340:30:35

Can you grip my hands?

0:30:350:30:37

Pull me towards you.

0:30:370:30:39

Push me away.

0:30:390:30:41

Can you hold your hands out for a while?

0:30:410:30:43

Raymond is struggling to answer even the simplest questions.

0:30:430:30:47

How do you feel?

0:30:470:30:48

Well... I do...

0:30:490:30:52

Raymond's usually very chatty and articulate,

0:30:520:30:55

but now he can't complete his sentences.

0:30:550:30:57

Something is clearly not right.

0:30:570:30:59

Pull them towards you.

0:30:590:31:00

They have to consider if his diabetes could be the cause of the problem.

0:31:000:31:04

We checked his blood sugars and they're 12.1,

0:31:040:31:06

so that's...it's raised, but it's not a concerned raise in any way.

0:31:060:31:09

So it's possible that he has had a CVA or a small TIA,

0:31:100:31:13

which is a mini-stroke.

0:31:130:31:15

They need to get Raymond to hospital,

0:31:170:31:19

where he can be more accurately diagnosed.

0:31:190:31:22

They might do a CT scan on the head, see if there's been a bleed.

0:31:220:31:26

If he's complaining of any headaches, what sort of headaches

0:31:260:31:29

have come on, if he's got any sort of vision deficiencies or anything.

0:31:290:31:34

How do you feel?

0:31:340:31:36

-How do I feel...?

-Any headaches?

0:31:360:31:39

-No.

-None at all.

0:31:390:31:41

What's your vision like now?

0:31:410:31:43

It's...it's....what... I can't believe it.

0:31:430:31:50

Raymond has been complaining of being very tired for the last few days.

0:31:520:31:56

He has a history of heart problems.

0:31:560:32:00

As soon as he's settled in the ambulance, he's wired up for an ECG.

0:32:000:32:04

You always wear a tie?

0:32:050:32:07

Well...

0:32:080:32:09

-Only on special occasions, like going shopping.

-Yes.

0:32:100:32:14

All the time he's working, Trevor tries to keep Raymond chatting.

0:32:140:32:17

-So do you remember going down the shops?

-Yes.

0:32:180:32:22

I...

0:32:220:32:23

I can't remember.

0:32:280:32:30

-We went to the...

-Struggling, aren't you?

0:32:300:32:34

No, no, no...no.

0:32:340:32:37

I went to the...to the library.

0:32:370:32:40

I went to the...oh, my God...

0:32:400:32:44

Raymond's memory is clearly not what it should be.

0:32:440:32:47

Just relax, mate, don't worry about it. It'll come back to you.

0:32:470:32:51

Yes.

0:32:510:32:52

The ECG is showing up an irregular heartbeat,

0:32:520:32:55

but this could just be part of his usual condition.

0:32:550:32:59

It does look like he has a...an illness or a heart rhythm called AF.

0:32:590:33:05

Atrial fibrillation, which basically is when the heart flutters,

0:33:050:33:12

if you like. And...

0:33:120:33:15

It can cause little clots, and if one of the clots has moved

0:33:150:33:17

up into the brain, it could cause ischemia in the brain,

0:33:170:33:20

so he could be getting the confusion from that point of view.

0:33:200:33:23

The 12-lead ECG is showing more areas for concern.

0:33:230:33:26

Where your electrical heart, the electrical system in your heart,

0:33:260:33:29

comes from the top and works its way down.

0:33:290:33:32

It then splits down the bottom.

0:33:320:33:34

And basically, the right-hand side in this gentleman's is

0:33:340:33:36

a little bit slower than the left-hand side -

0:33:360:33:38

to conduct the electricity to the ends.

0:33:380:33:41

So it's called right bundle branch block.

0:33:410:33:43

But you already knew you had that, didn't you, sir?

0:33:430:33:46

That's one of your old ones, yeah.

0:33:460:33:48

But, yeah, it's irregular as well.

0:33:480:33:50

So right bundle branch with a bit irregularity.

0:33:500:33:53

The hospital have received the results of the ECG ahead of

0:33:550:33:58

Ray's arrival.

0:33:580:34:00

He was then assessed by the specialist stroke team.

0:34:000:34:03

An MRI scan later revealed that Ray had suffered a mini-stroke.

0:34:040:34:08

Now in the glamorous world of powerboating speed is king,

0:34:130:34:16

but racing on water is high risk.

0:34:160:34:18

Once wrong move and the crew can hit the water at speeds that make

0:34:180:34:21

it feel like hitting concrete.

0:34:210:34:23

Shelley Jory-Leigh has done that twice this summer.

0:34:230:34:26

She is a top powerboat racer. I'm glad to see that you're OK.

0:34:260:34:29

Talk us through what happened in your first accident this summer.

0:34:290:34:31

How fast were you going, first of all?

0:34:310:34:33

We were running at about 89 mile an hour in the first accident.

0:34:330:34:36

We were running second in the World Championships,

0:34:360:34:39

so we were really pushing it.

0:34:390:34:40

It was a pure racing accident, gunning it into a corner

0:34:400:34:44

a little bit too fast, just lost control of the back of the boat...

0:34:440:34:48

And spun out.

0:34:480:34:50

As my throttle man fell out of the boat, he pulled the throttles back,

0:34:500:34:53

which enables the boat to...it's like a handbrake turn, really.

0:34:530:34:58

Right, and is that why he went out then,

0:34:580:35:00

or is that because he hit a wave?

0:35:000:35:02

We actually hit...we were really pushing it.

0:35:020:35:05

We hit a wave, which actually spun the back of the boat out.

0:35:050:35:08

He's got his hands on the throttle

0:35:080:35:10

and his other hand's holding on, but the g-force of that, it just.

0:35:100:35:13

And you can see...he goes over the top of you, doesn't he?

0:35:130:35:16

Yeah, unfortunately taking my head onto

0:35:160:35:19

the console of the boat at the same time.

0:35:190:35:21

But, thank God. Good crash helmet, life jacket.

0:35:210:35:25

And also, he was wearing that orange helmet,

0:35:250:35:27

so the other boats avoided him as well.

0:35:270:35:29

You had a second accident, which was actually even worse than that one.

0:35:290:35:32

We've got pictures of the aftermath.

0:35:320:35:35

I know. 15 years of racing and two accidents in one month.

0:35:350:35:39

The second accident was...freak.

0:35:390:35:43

The boat just went into a wave and shattered on impact,

0:35:430:35:46

which just shouldn't have happened.

0:35:460:35:48

I mean, there will be a big investigation of why that happened.

0:35:480:35:51

We were running in a straight line at the time.

0:35:510:35:54

-You know...

-And you're really very seriously bruised there.

0:35:540:35:57

How bad were your injuries?

0:35:570:35:59

I had a broken nose, severe head injuries,

0:35:590:36:01

which I'm still suffering from.

0:36:010:36:04

When you say you're "suffering", what sort of thing...?

0:36:040:36:07

Headaches... I have to sleep a lot...

0:36:070:36:09

No TV, no computers...but the rescue people at the time

0:36:100:36:15

of the accident were just unbelievable.

0:36:150:36:17

We have the Bergamot Scuba Angels,

0:36:170:36:19

who are constantly watching our racing. As well as all of our

0:36:190:36:22

safety equipment on board, they are absolutely monitoring every point.

0:36:220:36:25

So they are doctors who are also in scuba diving kit, are they?

0:36:250:36:28

Yeah. They're medics and doctors, but also qualified divers,

0:36:280:36:32

which is fantastic.

0:36:320:36:34

When you're dealing with water and speed, that's exactly what you need.

0:36:340:36:37

They were just there. When you say "Scuba Angels",

0:36:370:36:41

they are my angels.

0:36:410:36:42

I'm glad to see that you're OK. Your nose is now fixed as well, isn't it?

0:36:420:36:46

Hopefully you'll still feel a bit better as well and, please,

0:36:460:36:48

-I hope you don't have to get rescued again.

-Thank you.

0:36:480:36:51

Absolutely extraordinary. I did that once, powerboat racing,

0:36:520:36:55

and easily the most uncomfortable thing I have ever done in my life.

0:36:550:36:58

A runaway car heading down a hill with no-one inside

0:36:580:37:01

- a frightening sight - even worse when it's your own car.

0:37:010:37:04

That's what happened to Kim, who we'll meet in a moment.

0:37:040:37:07

Portsdown Hill is well-known for its views

0:37:070:37:10

and steep hills overlooking Portsmouth Harbour.

0:37:100:37:13

Walkers come here regularly with their dogs.

0:37:130:37:16

They leave their cars at the top

0:37:160:37:18

and get a good run over the grass down the hill.

0:37:180:37:21

That's what dog owner Kim did earlier.

0:37:210:37:23

She parked up as usual and set off on her walk,

0:37:230:37:26

but it didn't all go according to plan.

0:37:260:37:29

Something very unusual has happened.

0:37:290:37:31

Kim's car, seemingly of its own accord,

0:37:310:37:34

has left its parking space, rolled onto the grass,

0:37:340:37:37

and continued for a couple of hundred yards,

0:37:370:37:40

finally coming to a halt in bushes up against a tree.

0:37:400:37:44

Now vehicle recovery man Del and the police have been called out.

0:37:440:37:49

Kim has already been picked up by her husband and gone home.

0:37:490:37:53

Del's been left the keys to help recover the vehicle.

0:37:530:37:56

As they go down to investigate,

0:37:570:37:59

they're following the tracks the car has made on the damp grass.

0:37:590:38:03

Is this a case of no handbrake being used?

0:38:030:38:06

Blimey. Very lucky.

0:38:070:38:09

Well and truly buried in there, isn't it?

0:38:110:38:14

It turns out the runaway car has come to

0:38:160:38:18

a halt at the edge of a chalk cliff - a vertical drop of over 100 feet.

0:38:180:38:23

Five, ten feet that way and it would have ended up going all the

0:38:230:38:26

way down, into Carmarthen Avenue and maybe down onto Haverton Road.

0:38:260:38:29

Then Del makes a discovery that deepens

0:38:290:38:31

the mystery as to how the car got to be here.

0:38:310:38:34

Because the car is an automatic, the front wheels must have been locked,

0:38:410:38:45

so instead of rolling, somehow it's skidded all the way down the hill.

0:38:450:38:50

As it was sliding rather than free-wheeling,

0:38:500:38:53

at least its speed would have been kept in check.

0:38:530:38:56

Well, that's a write-off, though.

0:38:560:38:58

Del's got quite a job on his hands to get the car back up

0:38:590:39:02

the slippery slope.

0:39:020:39:04

I've just phone our control room at Fareham.

0:39:040:39:06

They said if we get the four by four here, one of the bosses has

0:39:060:39:10

got a four by four, and then we're going to come across the top

0:39:100:39:12

of the hill at the angle, come back to it here and then pull it out,

0:39:120:39:16

tow it up on the four by four and then put it on the back of my truck,

0:39:160:39:19

hopefully back to Fareham - that's the plan.

0:39:190:39:21

Fingers crossed and all that.

0:39:210:39:22

How the car started its long slide down remains unclear,

0:39:220:39:25

but it's certainly lucky it ended on the tree rather than over the cliff.

0:39:250:39:31

Well, here she is. You were quite surprised by all of that.

0:39:340:39:37

That is where it could have ended up, though.

0:39:370:39:39

-Is it?

-Yeah.

-Oh, my God.

-So what happened?

0:39:390:39:42

Erm...just went up there to walk my dog and...

0:39:420:39:46

Got out the car and just was walking along,

0:39:460:39:49

and I sort of fell, cos it was quite wet and

0:39:490:39:51

windy up there, and I sort of turned around and saw a car on the hill,

0:39:510:39:55

and just thought, "That shouldn't be allowed",

0:39:550:39:58

because of all the dog walkers.

0:39:580:39:59

It appeared to be driving down the hill.

0:39:590:40:01

Yes. And I thought, "Oh, there's people walking their dogs here."

0:40:010:40:05

And then I saw it was my car.

0:40:050:40:09

I just looked and thought, "That looks like my car."

0:40:090:40:13

They were clearly having a bit of a laugh, weren't they?

0:40:130:40:15

Hmm. I wasn't laughing at the time.

0:40:150:40:17

I bet you weren't laughing. I'm glad you're laughing now.

0:40:170:40:20

What do you think happened?

0:40:200:40:21

Do you think you forgot to put the handbrake on, possibly?

0:40:210:40:24

-Possibly.

-Could that have happened?

0:40:240:40:26

Possibly. The dog could have nudged it as I was taking him out.

0:40:260:40:29

I think I'd rather think of that, than...

0:40:290:40:32

But, yeah, I could have...I could have.

0:40:320:40:33

The really lucky...they said it's an automatic,

0:40:330:40:36

so perhaps it's going down the hill a little more slowly.

0:40:360:40:38

Yeah, that's good.

0:40:380:40:39

You must have been relieved it didn't hit anybody.

0:40:390:40:41

Oh, gosh, yeah.

0:40:410:40:42

When it hit the tree, I was just so relieved that it stopped.

0:40:420:40:46

I was just frozen to the spot...

0:40:460:40:48

I couldn't even look around to see if there would be anyone there,

0:40:480:40:50

I was just frozen to the spot, watching it go down.

0:40:500:40:53

So you're OK, the dog was OK, how was the car?

0:40:530:40:55

Did he get it out of there? Did it eventually get out?

0:40:550:40:58

-The car got out.

-How is it now?

0:40:580:41:01

It's OK, yeah. They had it for three months!

0:41:010:41:03

And how is your handbrake?

0:41:030:41:05

Are you using it a bit more often?

0:41:050:41:07

Well and truly...put on every time I park the car,

0:41:070:41:10

especially going up the hill.

0:41:100:41:11

Brilliant. Lovely to meet you. Thanks very much.

0:41:110:41:14

Now, before we finish, I thought you might like to meet Jim's other

0:41:140:41:17

half Debbie, who he called from the site.

0:41:170:41:19

That was a pretty nasty call to receive.

0:41:190:41:20

Awful.

0:41:200:41:21

But how's he doing now?

0:41:210:41:23

Amazingly well. Brilliant, Yeah, really proud of him.

0:41:230:41:26

And listen, you were due to get married, weren't you?

0:41:260:41:28

-We were.

-Just after the accident, which you had to put off.

0:41:280:41:31

So is it back on?

0:41:310:41:32

It's on, we're just waiting for Jim to walk, really.

0:41:320:41:35

Is that the idea, you want to walk down the aisle.

0:41:350:41:37

Yeah. As soon as I'm sorted, up and about and walking,

0:41:370:41:40

-that'll be the first thing on the agenda.

-OK.

0:41:400:41:42

Now listen, also, since the accident,

0:41:420:41:44

you've done a lot of raising money for the air ambulance.

0:41:440:41:46

Yeah. A couple of friends of mine, Barry and Sandra, between us all,

0:41:460:41:51

we got together and did a charity fun day.

0:41:510:41:53

Which we did last Sunday,

0:41:530:41:54

and we managed to raise £1,770 for air ambulance.

0:41:540:41:58

Why is it so important to you?

0:41:580:41:59

It's just really a thank you to all the people that came out,

0:41:590:42:02

it's really emotional.

0:42:020:42:04

It still gets you, I can see that now.

0:42:040:42:06

Look. Lovely to meet you. Good luck with the wedding.

0:42:060:42:09

You're able to give him a hug, by the way, don't worry about that.

0:42:090:42:12

Good luck with everything in the future.

0:42:120:42:14

There you go, so that's wrapped up. What happened with the popcorn, have they got it out?

0:42:140:42:18

No, they're still there. They still haven't got it out.

0:42:180:42:20

I've just got an update from Julian.

0:42:200:42:22

They're not on their way to the hospital either.

0:42:220:42:24

We did tell you that we'd get you all the information.

0:42:240:42:27

-Was it sweet or salted?

-I've asked. They don't know.

0:42:270:42:29

I said we'd be able to bring you the information.

0:42:290:42:31

We haven't been able to bring you all the information.

0:42:310:42:33

You're from news, you ought to be able to work this stuff out.

0:42:330:42:36

-They don't know.

-OK.

-I'd tell you if I did.

0:42:360:42:38

An extraordinary Real Rescues today, don't you think?

0:42:380:42:40

-We'll have more soon.

-Goodbye.

-See you. Bye-bye.

0:42:400:42:42

Subtitles By Red Bee Media Ltd

0:42:500:42:52

Nick Knowles and Louise Minchin present dramatic events from the day-to-day work of the emergency services, going behind the scenes at one of Britain's biggest police control centres.

A hospital critical care team is sent to operate on a man trapped on a building site and a major road accident is caused by a fox.