Thursday 21st March 2013 – 1.45pm – Chris Kowalik.
For ambulance and fire crews in Coventry, today’s cold and wet morning began with the lengthy and complex rescue of a driver from his crashed Landrover.
West Midlands Ambulance Service was called to the junction of Coventry Road and Broad Lane in Berkswell shortly after 7.20am.
A paramedic area support officer in a rapid response vehicle, a paramedic ambulance crew and the Midlands Air Ambulance crew of a Doctor and a Critical Care Practitioner from Cosford in Shropshire attended.
They arrived to find a badly damaged Landrover Defender that had left the road and ended up against a large tree. Trapped in the vehicle was its 18 year old male driver.
A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said: “The Landrover had an external rollcage which saved his life but also hindered crews’ ability to get to him.
“In the two-and-a-half-hour operation, the fire service with additional assistance from their technical services and ambulance crews worked together to right the vehicle and get to the driver to treat him before getting him out.
“To right the vehicle, winching cables were attached to the car then were wrapped around a tree on the opposite side of the road. Using this makeshift pulley system, the Landrover was brought back onto its wheels. The fire service then began to cut into the vehicle using their cutting equipment. The thickness of the rollcage meant it took longer than it otherwise would have.
“With the temperature at below freezing point, the driver was beginning to suffer the effects of hypothermia and was given warm fluids. He had a head injury, arm, leg and pelvic fractures and a back injury. He was administered drugs including pain relief.
“He was carefully removed from the Landrover, fully immobilised and wrapped in specialist warming blankets before being flown to University Hospital Coventry and Warwickshire.
“It was a testing and difficult rescue, performed admirably by all involved in cold, wet and muddy conditions.”