Sussex farmer impaled on spike meets medics who saved his life

Mr Johnstone meeting the air ambulance crew last October

Mr Johnstone meeting the air ambulance crew last October

First published in News

A father who was impaled on a blunt metal spike in a horrific farming accident has been reunited with the people who saved his life.

David Johnstone, 53, was strapping hay bales onto a trailer when he slipped and fell 10ft onto the back of a tractor.

He thought he was going to die when the spike penetrated his chest, narrowly missing vital organs.

David, from Warnham, near Horsham, said: “I got myself up and then just slumped over a bale of |hay.

“I was in terrible pain and my breathing became shorter and more agonising each time I tried to get some air and I thought that this was it.

“When I heard someone say they could hear the ambulance sirens it felt like I had been in pain forever.”

The ambulance team made up of Critical Care Paramedic Lewis Allam, Student Paramedic Laura Benham and Ambulance Technician Christian Clarke quickly established that David’s condition was life-threatening.

His quest to thank all the emergency service teams who helped save his life was realised when he met up with an ambulance crew from South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb).

Last October David he also visited the air ambulance crew to thank them in person.

He said: “I particularly remember Laura as I seem to recall that she was at my head and telling me repeatedly how well I was doing, although it didn’t feel like it.

“To all, I extend my heartfelt thanks for their amazing skills and for helping to save my life.

“I have changed my focus on life and I feel so lucky that all that remains is an unattractive scar.”

The crew were delighted to |receive a visit from their former patient.

Laura said: “It makes such a difference for us being able to meet a patient who has made a full recovery and is so grateful for our care.

“We were all challenged by the severity of Dave’s injuries, something we do not deal with on a daily basis, and it was lovely to see him looking so well.”


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