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If you're seriously ill or critically injured, every
second counts, especially if you're up high or off the beaten track.
But, thanks to these guys, the people of the UK's
biggest county are never more than 10 minutes away from a hospital.
The Yorkshire Air Ambulance can do 150 mph and every day brings a new life-or-death emergency.
Five million people depend on these yellow helicopters to bring life-saving care from the skies.
When a multiple pile-up closes Britain's highest motorway, or there's a serious accident
on the shop floor, the highly trained paramedics and pilots
of the Helimed team are there to rescue the casualties.
Today on Helicopter Heroes -
there's an accident in the woods and a man suffers his second fractured skull.
It left you with a dented skull, anyway?
A pedestrian's fighting for her life - the Helimed 98 is struggling to reach her.
Can you wave those people off?
It's fun in the snow, but one teenager discovers the downside of sledging.
We went under some barbed wire and she cut all her neck.
And a building worker is run over by an eight-tonne digger.
We've got to be so careful with him.
This is one of the must-have accessories these days.
It's clean, green and keeps you very, very warm.
You can even chob up your own wood, but you must do it safely.
A cold winter in North Yorkshire means that logs for wood-burning stoves are in short supply.
As a result, many villagers are becoming amateur lumberjacks.
Helimed 99 is being dispatched from Leeds Bradford airport.
There's been an accident in a wood near Gargrave in the Yorkshire Dales.
Apparently there are reports there's a car in some woodland...
There's a driver with some injuries,
we're not quite sure what type of injuries they are, as yet.
Tony's unsure about the location and he's certainly no Jeremy Clarkson.
We've got a red "Subbarroo" car.
Whatever they're called, those boy-racer cars. A Subaru.
It's a "Sow-barrow Imprazza"!
But the emergency they've been called to in remote woodland is no joke.
More details of the incident are coming into Helimed headquarters.
Someone in a little copse of woods must have been cutting some
trees down and a tree has fallen on one of them.
He's not fully alert and they're querying a brain injury, so it could be a nasty head injury.
Updates, the land crew has just got on scene, and apparently there's an ICU nurse on scene as well.
Chris Bosomworth was using a chainsaw to fell trees when the accident happened.
He wasn't wearing a helmet.
Luckily, he was working with his friend, Dave Farnsworth,
who's an intensive care nurse, and he's already begun first aid.
But, there's a problem. It's hard enough for the team to reach their patient.
It'll be impossible to bring him back to the chopper this way.
He's got a graze on top of his head.
The team's patient
was using a chainsaw deep in the wood went a branch fell on him.
Chris's mate saw it happen.
We were both cutting the wood together.
It's a piece of dead wood and a piece of it's broken off
and fell on him rather than down to the ground.
Just an immediate assessment and then call the ambulance and stay with him.
Sir, I just want to have a look at the top of your head, OK?
Chris hasn't moved since he was knocked out.
He's confused and can't answer the paramedic's questions.
Do you know where you are at the moment?
It could be a sign his brain is swelling inside his skull.
Two minutes later he started to come round, open his eyes, but it took
probably five minutes to get to where we are.
Have you had previous injury to your head?
20 years ago, a rock fell on him during a climbing accident.
This case just got a lot more serious.
Chris has fractured his skull before.
A second brain injury means his life is in real danger.
Has it left you with a dented skull?
He needs hospital treatment, quickly.
This chap's taken a knock to the head while he's been cutting these trees.
The problem is, we're located on one side of the road
and it'll be quite difficult to get the patient there.
Coming up, Chris is not out of the woods yet, in more ways than one.
He's a bit confused and disoriented, and had a period of being unconscious.
A teenage girl seems to have had a miraculous escape, but paramedic Daz is worried.
No neck pain, other than the pain under your chin?
And it's a difficult rescue for an injured worker trapped in a sewer.
Last year, controllers in this room built with 670,000 999 calls.
They ranged from minor accidents and illnesses through to life-threatening emergencies.
Guess which guys tend to get the most serious jobs?
On an estate in Sheffield, a high-powered sports car
has hit a house, narrowly missing the owner who was mowing his lawn.
He escaped, but a young woman walking nearby hasn't been so lucky.
She's critically injured and Helimed 98 has been scrambled from its nearby base.
OK we're going over t'railway line, so we're just here.
Pilot Craig Redmond flew Apache gunships in Afghanistan before joining the Helimed team.
But this mission will also be dangerous, for a different reason.
Big pylons visual, just on the other side of that crest.
-Yeah, I've got them.
-It's this side of, isn't it?
He's heading for a landing site in the middle of a suburban housing estate.
-See where the football is?
That's where the lane is.
It's quite a long way.
Dozens have come out to watch the drama unfolding in their street.
Using the local sports field isn't an option.
There's a fence between it and the accident scene.
We've got police on t'field securing your field now.
-Yeah. You see the junction down about to the 3 o'clock know where those people are standing?
That might be a little bit better but I'd want those cars moving.
Are you worried about damaging that car or just the closeness of it?
Both, really, and the people that are stood there.
Can you just wave those people off?
Yeah, I'm cracking t'door. They're moving back.
The chopper's rotor blades are only feet from the trees.
You've just got trees on your front left, Craig.
They're all small hedges now you're directly over.
All clear my side.
-All clear front left.
-And we're down.
Craig does it, squeezing Helimed 98 into a tiny patch of ground.
25 year-old Romina is from Romania.
She was walking home from work at a local pub when the accident happened.
She was thrown six feet in the air when the Honda S2000 hit her.
We're going to straighten this one shortly, all right?
We'll just let that morph get through.
Shocked eyewitnesses saw what happened.
There were two people stood there.
They must have stepped back once,
one big step and it went straight past them into the wall.
The impact has smashed both Romina's legs. She's bleeding internally.
Paramedics are trained to be calm, but they all know this is serious.
Open your eyes, sweetheart.
Going to start moving your legs now.
This traction splint will ensure blood continues flowing to their
patient's lower legs and feet, but straightening her broken thighs will hurt - a lot.
The police are already gathering evidence.
There's no shortage of witnesses.
This was no boy racer - the driver is 49.
Can you manage? I'll let go of that one and put some tension on.
I think that tib and fib's all right.
Can you just support the pelvis while we're doing this?
She's only little, we don't want to pull her down with that.
If you can't get any further, mate, we've gone both straight they're aligned now.
Romina was staying with a relative.
-Her English is far from perfect, and that's making it harder to diagnose her injuries.
-Please, help me.
-We are doing, Romina.
SHE CRIES INCOHERENTLY
Romina's injuries are so numerous Lee has
to write them down to remember them.
It's important the orthopaedic surgery team all ready waiting
at Sheffield's Northern General Hospital know exactly what they're dealing with.
She's got bilateral closed fractured femurs.
She's got a right tib and fib fracture,
a left humerus fracture,
BP is 119/80, pulse 102.
-Ow, it hurts.
Coming up, Army vet Craig once took on the Taliban, but this take-off will require real courage too.
-Blades are above the lamp now.
Paramedics turn lumberjacks to rescue Chris, the injured woodsman.
And the team are scrambled to an accident at a country house.
I saw him go by and all of a sudden I heard this crash.
When winter comes to Yorkshire, the schools are often the first to suffer.
Teachers are snowed in and heating systems fail.
Which is good news if you're young.
Most of Yorkshire's snowbound, roads are blocked and some villages cut off.
But for the local teenagers it's playtime.
Shops have sold out of sledges and any slope will do for some high-speed fun.
But the crew of Helimed 99 often find themselves picking up the pieces where winter sports go wrong.
Today, they're on their way to Oxenholme, high in the Pennines.
A teenager's hit a barbed-wire fence at high speed.
The team have been to fatal accidents like this.
Last year we had quite a nasty sledging incident.
Unfortunately, one of the patients involved sadly passed away.
It does bring that to the fore,
we all tend to remember some of the incidents and the patients.
At the end of the day we're all human.
When you're a youngster you think you're invulnerable.
I don't think you realise
whizzing down a field at 30 mph towards a barbed-wire fence,
when you put it in context that sounds very dangerous,
but when you're a kid it's all part of the fun, isn't it?
In a snowbound landscape, navigation is tricky.
All they have is a grid reference for the incident.
But once they've landed, there's no sign of anyone who's injured.
The mystery is soon solved - she's in a house nearby.
Do you know where they've gone?
14 year-old Ella McDowell was sledging with her school friend,
Holly Harper, when she lost control and hit the fence.
Now she's in Holly's kitchen, being cared for by Holly's mum, Jo.
She was going down and went under some barbed wire
and she cut all her neck.
The problem we've got in this kind of weather is
these farm tracks are very icy, and haven't been gritted.
The response car's made it, but that's a four-wheel-drive vehicle, so we're just
putting together some contingencies in case the ambulance can't make it, which would be either a flight in
the helicopter to Huddersfield or the mountain rescue with their four-wheel-drive ambulance.
I've only just managed to get here.
-Do you think the land ambulance will get here?
-That's the other question.
Not that easily, to be honest.
The accident has left Ella with deep cuts to her face and neck.
They look nasty, but the Helimed team
are more worried about invisible damage the impact may have caused.
We'll get you patched up down at the hospital in no time.
Marvellous, no more aches and pains anywhere?
She was just talking about her shoulder.
The neck is packed with blood vessels and nerves, and an impact like this can cause spinal injuries.
OK, squeeze my fingers.
Smashing, lift my hands up if you can.
That's not hurting, anywhere, is it? Not hurting your shoulder, no?
And you don't feel cut in half at all, no neck pain other than the pain under your chin?
That's what I'm bothered about.
Darren's examination is designed to identify
a potentially serious injury without alarming his patient.
-Did you get up and then wail straight away?
-No, I felt something...
Yeah... And then you weren't happy.
Her friend's dad, Mick, was among the first to come to Ella's rescue.
He was horrified to find she'd hit a single strand of barbed wire.
They'd only been out five minutes and obviously this has entailed from it.
It's a little accident, but hopefully she'll be all right.
The big question now is how are they going to take Ella to hospital?
Her case wouldn't normally be serious enough to justify a flight.
We're just having a bit of a conference as to whether
the ambulance is going to get to us with the weather being as it is.
If they stay where they are if the road conditions are bad, we can lift her down.
But local paramedics have battled through the drifts in time to take over from the Helimed team.
No rushing. Don't be running.
Ella's very calm, considering the injuries she's received.
She knew the fence was there but lost control when snow temporarily blinded her.
Few people realise how serious sledging accidents can be.
Watch your step, have a little seat...
Ella's been lucky. She could have had some nasty scarring to show for her collision with the fence.
The good news is her wound's healed well, with little sign of her narrow escape.
Coming up, a badly injured pedestrian is prepared for a life-saving flight to hospital.
We'll get her assessed but she's critically injured.
And a builder's seriously hurt in a fall through a barn roof.
Let's get back to the woods in North Yorkshire, where a man chopping logs
has suffered a serious head injury for the second time in 20 years.
Chris Bosomworth was using a chainsaw to fell wood when a heavy branch fell on his head.
Do you know where you are?
He's agitated, and showing signs of a serious brain injury - his second.
Now pilot Chris Atrall is trying to land Helimed 99
closer to the team's patient, but it's not good to be easy.
-Clear to your left...
-There's a gate there.
I feel nauseous.
We're going to get you something for that, OK?
Flying doctor Andy Pountney has his own problems.
Patient Chris has told him he feels sick.
Flying him like this could be dangerous.
We've given him something to settle his nausea.
If we take him strapped down on a spinal board,
we don't want him to start being sick, so we're trying to get that settled down first of all.
But we're concerned about how the injury is, he's a bit confused and
disorientated and obviously he's had a period of being unconscious.
We need to get him to hospital, so it's a risk-benefit balance
of taking him back to the helicopter strapped down.
Initially KO'd for 2-3 minues.
We'll be going to LGI...
They're clearing the way to get Chris to the chopper.
There's no time to waste, his condition's showing signs of deteriorating.
Do you know what month it is?
-What year is it?
Oh god, nausea.
Is that causing you any pain at all?
Chris fractured his skull in the 1980s in a climbing accident.
It left him with epilepsy, restricted vision and a dent in his skull.
We're going down the board six inches. Ready, steady, move.
A second fracture is extremely serious, but at least he's now ready for his flight to hospital.
Can you give me your surname again, Chris?
What started out as a garbled report of an injured man in a car
has turned out to be a life-or-death emergency.
It's like any job, you know, you just come with open eyes,
because what any information you get initially doesn't tally to what's happened.
He's been very lucky. I've not seen the bit of tree that landed on his head,
but looking at the branches they've been cutting it could have been quite substantial weight.
He has been lucky.
It hurts, nausea.
I know, I know.
Chris is still feeling sick.
Dr Andy knows flying him is a risk, but not as big as that posed by a long road journey.
10-15 minutes, over.
After a blow to the head, the brain can swell with sometimes fatal results.
The team aren't taking any chances with Chris.
The oxygen's just in case he has got any
serious head injury in terms of any bleeding or anything around the brain.
We need to make sure the rest of the brain tissue
stays well oxygenated, so that's why he's having a bit of extra oxygen at the moment.
He's getting a little bit agitated, just to keep you updated.
He's on his way to Leeds General Infirmary, which has one of the UK's most advanced neurological units.
The team that saved Top Gear's Richard Hammond
is waiting to examine Chris.
He's a lot more settled now than he was.
Coming up, hospital doctors prepare to find out if Chris has suffered brain damage once again.
And we meet the building workers who fall victim to their dangerous job.
Remember the pedestrian that was knocked down by a sports car that mounted the pavement?
She's about to take off for hospital, but this isn't a routine flight.
Helimed 98 pilot Craig Redman used the skills he learnt flying Apache gunships for the army
to carry out the dramatic landing in the middle of a suburban housing estate in Sheffield.
Now the team are fighting to save barmaid Rumina who was badly injured when she
was hit by a sports car which left the road and collided with a house on her route home from work.
Got multiple fractures. We're concerned her pelvis might be fractured
so the priority now is to get her up
to the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield.
But she's critically injured at this moment in time.
The flight to hospital will take less than five minutes,
but first Craig has to get Helimed 98 out of the quiet cul-de-sac.
It's full of hazards, all of them lethal.
Above the lamp.
The smallest mistake could end in disaster, but Lee and Peter are more worried about their patient.
Her injuries are the worst they've seen in a pedestrian who survived.
Those legs were compromised, weren't they?
That left one especially. Very lucky.
It was all doubled back on itself.
I think it cut its blood supply.
For Craig the hard work is over.
Sheffield's Northern General's tiny helipad is one of the smallest in the UK.
It doesn't look that way today.
-It'll feel like a football pitch compared to where we just landed!
Rumina will undergo surgery almost immediately.
Doctors will use five pints of blood during her operation.
There's a real danger she could lose both her legs, even her life.
Dr Stephen Rowe, who often flies in the helimed choppers,
was one of the surgical team that operated on her.
Her X-rays showed the extent of her terrible injuries.
When we were in theatre with her after the accident,
there were times when we weren't sure whether she'd survive or not.
The pelvis on its own, a fracture like that can kill you, combined with the injury to the thigh bone.
That's a very significant injury.
We've got a CT scan of her head and you can see there's an area
that's different from this side.
This is an area of bleeding into the tissue of the brain caused by the blow on the head that she sustained.
The combination of the pelvic injury, which was a life-threatening injury,
the injury to the femur which is one you can lose a lot of blood from, and the significant head injury
meant she was very lucky to survive her injuries.
Thanks to the Helimed team and the skills of the Northern General surgeons, Rumina is making
a good recovery, but she'll live with the legacy of her accident for the rest of her life.
Coming up - he still has the scars of his last head injury.
Can Chris recover from a second?
Being a builder is one of the UK's top five most dangerous jobs.
Safety on construction sites is a priority, but unfortunately accidents do happen.
Building-sites come in all shapes and sizes, all of them dangerous.
And on a construction site in the Dales one worker has had a serious fall.
Today anaesthetist Steve Rowe is giving up his day off to fly on Helimed 99.
His life-saving skills are badly needed.
The team's patient has become trapped down a concrete shaft.
Hello, mate, just letting you know we've got a doctor out with us.
Left hand side of the chest and also the right of the hip.
The worker has fallen 3.5 metres.
It's part of a drainage complex under a new bypass around the town of Settle.
The biggest question for Dr Steve and the Helimed team is how are they going to get to him?
There's an ambulance crew with him
who've given him some Tramadol to ease his pain.
When we come to move him his pain is likely to increase.
There's a problem, the patient is desperate for
a stronger pain relief, but the last thing needed are more paramedics and a doctor heading down the shaft.
A broken ankle for a crew member could put the air ambulance out of action for its next emergency call.
We can try to move him. I can get in and at least give him some morphine.
Dr Steve decides to give the morphine to
one of the ground paramedics who has squeezed through the shaft to get to the patient.
It's a rare decision, but as long as Steve keeps a close eye on how
the closely controlled drug is being used, it's the safest option for all involved.
Pass it through the hole. Steve is happy fot it to be given under his direction.
It makes it easier for us to control it and makes it
a lot more acceptable for the patient to be hoisted out
of that area when he's got adequate pain relief.
Now the patient is as comfortable as you can be 3.5 metres down a concrete shaft,
but the big question is will they be able to get him out?
Once he's out, if we can get a spinal board set up
and the scoop and we'll scoop him from that.
If I can get the splint on the spinal board ready...
It's a group effort.
The patient is secured to a spinal board to prevent any
further injury and the delicate operation to bring him back to the surface begins.
This isn't just a risky environment for the site workers, it also poses
real danger to the emergency services involved in the rescue.
Obviously you've got to be careful because there are hazards around.
The fire brigade and the site workers will give us advice on what's safe and what isn't safe to carry out.
The worker is nearly back to the surface,
but any break to the rope would send him crashing back down the shaft.
It's strength and precision from the firefighters,
but the rescue has been a success, a true team effort.
Well done, guys, fantastic work.
It was quite a tight job to get him out, but the paramedics and
the firemen worked quite well together and he eventually came out.
It took a bit of time, but it's sorted.
He's had a moderate strength painkiller from the ambulance service called Tramadol.
We gave him some morphine which is a stronger painkiller.
He's not had a lot of that for his size, but he was quite comfy.
We've just given him a wee bit to take the edge off his pain.
He said he's quite comfortable with that.
Even though Steve feels the patient's injuries
aren't life-threatening, he still needs to be taken to the nearest hospital for a full check-up.
The closest A&E is a dash across the Pennines, Lancaster General.
He was later released after treatment for what turned out to be minor injuries.
Around a quarter of a million of us are injured at work each year
and if you're a builder you're more likely to be hurt than most.
From falling masonry to collapsing cranes, development sites are full of hazards and few are as lethal
as earth-moving equipment as one unlucky construction worker found out.
Just got a message on the phone saying the patient run over
by a Caterpillar, which is one of them bulldozer-type machines.
Bricklayer Andrew was working on a house near the market town of
Pocklington in East Yorkshire when he was run over by an earth mover.
His leg's been crushed.
Obviously time critical if
there's artery damage or nerve damage or anything like that,
so we'll be heading for one of the major hospitals and just try
and keep him stable and get him there as quick as we can.
Ever since Helimed 99 left its base at Leeds-Bradford airport it's
been raining and the crew aren't sure they'll reach their patient, but they're prepared for anything.
Helimed 99, I've been advised there's a landing area for you near to the windmill.
The condition of the patient is that he's a crushed leg, over.
Roger, thanks for that. We'll be about five minutes.
The weather appears to have been good news for Andrew.
The digger weighs several tons, but his leg has sunk into soft mud, protecting him from serious injury.
I don't suppose it's possible to get the LGI red phone number.
We've got a doctor on scene who wishes to speak to the consultant.
Paramedics Lee and James believe Andrew's had a lucky escape, but crush injuries can be lethal.
They know he needs to be properly checked out in hospital.
It weighs approximately eight tonnes, so it's gone across his waist and his pelvis.
We're not sure of the injuries he's sustained at the moment.
We're just establishing which hospital to take him to.
You've got a lot of vascular area within the pelvis that can rapidly loose blood into that area,
so we've got to be so careful with him.
He's in quite a bit of pain, I've given him some pain relief.
We're going to get him onto the trolley, down to the aircraft and off to LGI.
He's been quite lucky to survive with eight tons of digger going across his leg.
It's quite similar to one we had last year out at Whitby.
That time, that was the lower leg and this time, it's the upper leg,
the pelvis and the femur
that have been damaged. A lot of weight to have on you.
Andrew was looking forward to the end of the working day and a short drive home.
Now, he's taking off on a 40-mile flight to the trauma unit of Leeds General Infirmary.
We're just keeping an eye on him,
on his vital signs, his blood pressure as well, and his heart rate.
Just try and keep him stable until we get to LGI.
We have specialist vascular surgeons there that if there's any problem
or complication, they can get it sorted.
The team are optimistic.
Andrew has cheated the odds by escaping without major injury.
But only a scan at the LGI will confirm the diagnosis. Whatever the result,
the building industry's accident record just got a little bit worse.
In total, Andrew spent nearly two months at the LGI and now,
ten months later, he's still being treated at his local hospital.
I had seven hours in theatre.
They discovered I'd got a broken ankle, two bones
below my knee broken, a damaged knee,
pelvis broken in four places and a damaged bladder.
When I came round the following day, I had all this frame sticking it of me
and I thought I'd never walk again, but I am doing.
And Andrew is still not back at work as a brickie.
I've got another operation to go
and I've still got a lot of pain in my left leg,
especially on the knee and the ankle,
which restricts me bending down,
which is difficult to do in my job as a bricklayer.
So hopefully, I don't know how long it'll take,
but it'll take as long as it takes, I suppose,
and I'll just have to see if I can do the job after that.
Builders work in all sorts of places, but whatever the job,
hard hats, proper boots and high vis are a must.
But it doesn't matter what you're wearing if you're high up and gravity gets hold of you.
And you don't have to be halfway up a tower block.
Out in the country, men and women are at work every day, converting barns and repairing farm buildings,
and up on the roof, you're more than high enough to hurt yourself.
We're just off to somebody who has apparently fallen off a roof.
We're just to the west of Malton. We haven't got any further details at this time.
We'll find out when we get there.
Building worker Dean Benson has fallen through the roof of a cow shed.
Ground paramedics have called in the helicopter, fearing a spinal injury.
Hi, guys. Hello.
Dean has fallen nearly 20 ft, but he's only complaining of a sore shoulder.
I think he just took a step sideways
and has gone through a clear plastic sheet.
If we just cut straight down here.
-Sorry about your jumper, Dean.
-It's all right.
Paramedics Kate and Tony know falls like this often lead to serious back or neck injuries.
-Were you knocked out at all, Dean?
-I think so.
-He does wear a rucksack and that sort of thing.
Dean must wear this neck brace until the team know what's wrong.
-What's happened, Dean?
I'm just going to have a listen to your chest, OK?
Kate is a zoologist who changed careers.
Now, she's an expert on human anatomy
and each question is designed to diagnose undetected injuries.
You say your chest felt a bit tight?
-Just my left shoulder.
Dean is shocked by his plunge.
What we need to do is just see if we can pop a needle in the back of your hand to give you something
for the pain, and then we're going to lie you flat onto a board and take you up to the hospital, OK?
At least he had a softer landing than he might have expected.
The concrete floor of the cowshed is covered in straw.
His breathing seems OK, he's got a decent pulse
so we're not too worried at this stage.
Can you move your wrist at all, Dean?
A little bit of swelling there.
But it turns out Dean's injuries are much more serious than they appear.
He's flown to York Hospital, where doctors discover he has
a fractured skull, a broken collarbone and wrist,
six broken ribs and a collapsed lung, his spleen is ruptured,
he suffers a loss of hearing and has temporary paralysis.
Builders need a head for heights, especially when they're trying
to prevent Yorkshire's historic houses from crumbling.
300 years ago, they liked to build big around here, and at an old manor house near York,
one modern workman has found out that the hard way.
It's a builder who has fallen between 10 and 29 ft off scaffolding.
And it's a possible chest injury. He's still laid on his side.
Helimed 98 is just 10 minutes from the casualty.
Stephen has been a builder for 28 years and has never had a fall until now.
All of a sudden, I heard this crash
and I looked down and I saw him laid on the floor.
-98, go ahead.
-'The RRV is on scene
-'and queried fractured ribs and a chest injury.'
All received. ETA is just a couple of minutes, and we'll give you a shout once we've landed.
-How are we looking there, buddy?
-OK. RRV is on the scene, so it must be down here somewhere, mate.
It's down there.
Down there, isn't it?
-Hiya, you all right?
This is Steve. He fell from up there, probably about 10 foot or so.
-Pain in his left arm, pain in his rib area.
44-year-old Steven was working on the roof
and was coming down the scaffolding
when he slipped on the ladder and fell.
He's been very lucky to survive.
He and his colleagues were working 40 feet up.
Flying doctor Steve Rowe knows few people fall that far
and escape serious injury.
Just going to have a listen to your breathing, OK, Steve?
My name's Steve as well, I'm one of the doctors with the air ambulance.
Well done. Nice steady breath.
Steven's in intense pain.
He's broke at least two ribs, but the team fear
he may have other injuries.
The owner of the house dialled 999.
I didn't hear him, cos I was at the back of the house,
but it's just when they came running downstairs and said, "He's just fallen off the ladder."
And the thing is, they've gone up and down and up and down for days, you know?
Steven's a father of four.
He's been in the building trade since he left school.
Now, he's found out about site safety the hard way.
He's taken a significant fall
from the scaffolding, he's got some pain
on his left-hand side, it's worse when he breathes in,
so it does make you suspect that there could be some injuries
to that left chest and lung.
It's unclear at the moment exactly what's going on, but his observations are quite stable,
so we'll have a good look at him once we've got him on his back.
Ready, steady, move.
That's it. You just relax, Steve.
That's it, mate.
We just need you on your back to move you, OK?
Is that pain even worse now, on your back?
Where is most of your pain, Steve?
-Left-hand side of my chest.
-Left side of your chest.
20 miles away, specialists are waiting to scan his upper body.
Only then will they be able to rule out internal injuries or, even worse, damage to his spine.
OK then, Steve.
A bit bumpy until we get you onto the aircraft, but we'll
get you as comfortable as we can once we're there.
On "lift," then, please.
Two, three, and lift.
Now, Stephen's on his way to Leeds General Infirmary.
He's probably got some fractured ribs there, but there's nothing we need to do to intervene at the moment.
His oxygen saturations were very good.
We are keeping a close eye on him,
because these sort of injuries can evolve.
We haven't ruled out that he hasn't got a pneumothorax
or any chest injury, but there's nothing at the moment we need to do anything about.
Clear the hedge.
Clear my side.
Steven's workmates have turned out to see him off.
He won't be driving the van home tonight - he has an appointment at the LGI.
-Hiya, folks. You OK? Hiya.
-The Helimed team meet patients
who have luck on their side every day, but this case is extraordinary.
Steven's about to undergo a full examination.
No past medical history, no allergies, usually fit and well.
We've handed him over to the A&E staff here, they're going to check him over from top to toe,
see if they can find any injuries which we've missed out in the wild
and take some X-rays to see what's going on in his chest.
He's still very sore on that left side of his chest,
it will be interesting to see what the X-rays reveal.
And after an overnight stay, Steven was fit enough to walk out
after little more treatment than painkillers.
They said to the wife that he's probably the luckiest man in here,
falling that distance and not having anything but two broken ribs. It's quite lucky.
Even if there had been a bit of tube sticking out of the scaffolding,
if I'd hit that on my way down, I don't know what would have happened.
He'll be off work for a while as his two broken ribs recover,
but he will soon be back on the roof with renewed respect for ladders.
I'm pleased to say that all those building workers are recovering well,
but the outcome is less certain for Chris, a man who went down to the woods to cut logs
and ended up with a serious head injury.
Chris Bosomworth was using a chainsaw
to fell wood when a heavy branch fell down on his head, fracturing his skull for the second time.
Now, he's on final approach to the rooftop landing pad
of the Leeds General Infirmary, where a team of specialists are standing by to examine him.
The dent in Chris's head is a legacy of a climbing accident more than 20 years ago.
Now, his skull is fractured again.
Head injury patients are often put into an artificially induced coma.
It allows the brain to rest and heal itself.
He has a fairly good history, the patient's definitely been unconscious for five minutes.
When we've looked at his head, there is a depressed skull fracture in the past, he had one 20 years ago.
It may be some time before Chris fully regains consciousness,
and the outlook for a complete recovery isn't good.
My name is Peter, I'm one of the doctors here at the Infirmary. How are you?
But three weeks later, after a transfer
to his local hospital, Chris is up and making good progress.
Walking is still an effort, but considering he's one of only a handful of people
who have survived two fractures to the skull, he's in pretty good shape.
I started out with very little movement down my right-hand side.
Totally unable to walk... or stand or balance.
physios have worked on me, I'm now able to walk with a stick
and assistance, but I can walk with a walking frame unaided.
Chris has few memories of his accident, but his friends keep reminding him.
And was simply cutting wood,
with the farmer's permission, to fuel the stoves.
came down somehow and hit me on the head,
knocked me out,
fractured my skull. That's all I can really tell you about it.
The only thing
I do particularly remember is the helicopter. It was only...
a glimpse, if you like,
but the air ambulance quite possibly saved my life.
Back home in Lancashire, Chris is still a fan of
his wood-burning stove, despite the trouble it's caused him,
although his partner, Liz, is not so sure.
The fire's wonderful, however, we do have to go and buy wood now.
She's forbidden me...
Chris broke one of the first rules of lumberjacking - he wasn't wearing a helmet.
I had already ordered a helmet.
The day after the accident, the helmet arrived.
This is the helmet.
So had it arrived one day earlier,
we wouldn't be making this film.
When Helicopter Heroes comes back...
A climber plunges from a rock face
and paramedic Al has to jump for it.
-OK, you slide the door open.
-OK, opening the door now.
A lollipop lady whose car crash presented her rescuers with a big problem.
One, two, three, go. No, we're not going anywhere, are we?
Up in the Dales, a trampoline lands its owner in hospital.
-He's been in pain for a little while.
-And the team treats
the satellite guy who fell to Earth.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
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