Monday, 20 February 2012

Survivor says "thanks for saving my life"

A stablegroom who suffered life-threatening injuries after she was trampled by horses has thanked the Surrey Air Ambulance medics who helped save her life.

Lottie Taylor was leading four horses back into their stables when the animals were spooked and bolted in a freak accident at a farm in Chiddingfold.

She suffered broken ribs and a punctured lung and was given emergency treatment at the scene by the life-saving charity’s doctor and critical care paramedic.

The 24-year-old was flown to a major trauma centre in London but amazingly returned home just a week later following the accident last month (January 11th).

She recalled: “I tried to let go of the horses but because I was stood in the middle of them there was nowhere for me to go.

“They separated and I hit the floor, which was rather hard, and I knew I had done some damage because I felt my ribs jiggling around.

“I broke several ribs on my right side which punctured my lung but somehow got up and walked to the house. I guess that was just adrenaline which is pretty amazing when you need it.

“I didn’t think I was going to die, I knew I was in trouble but I had no concept of just how bad my injuries were until I woke up in the Intensive Therapy Unit (ITU) 24 hours later.”

Land paramedics from the South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAmb) were first on scene to give vital first aid.

They called in Surrey Air Ambulance which arrived in eight minutes and Dr Geoff Healy said it was the worst chest flail injury he had seen in seven years of practice.

He and critical care paramedic Stu Plumbley anaesthetised Lottie and performed emergency chest surgery at the scene before Pilot Captain Pete Driver flew her to King’s College Hospital.

Lottie, from Dorking, spent three days on a ventilator but made a rapid recovery and was allowed home a week later.

Last week (February 14th), she visited the helicopter base at Dunsfold to thank the medics for helping to save her life.

She added: “I don’t remember anything about the helicopter ride so they obviously did their job very well! I just remember being given pain relief and that was fantastic.

“I’m so, so grateful for the service and the people who donate and are generous enough to make it function.

“I can’t thank them enough and it’s been made quite clear to me that if the Air Ambulance was not there things could have been very different.

“Anyone who works with horses knows these things happen. You can either be scared by it or get on with it. It’s what I do, it’s what I love and I’m not going to stop doing it just yet.”

If you would like to make a donation to the Air Ambulance please call 01622 833833.

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