On Wednesday 23rd September 2009, my life changed. The date has become a permanent fixture in my mind whether or not I want it to. Till this day I am shocked at how quickly my life turned from a happy one with future plans into a temporary living nightmare.
Almost one year ago on 'that day', Nick (my then fiancé) was involved in a serious road traffic accident on his way to work. A quick response paramedic attended to the scene of the accident and established that Nick needed further treatment - and fast!
The accident happened at about 8am, so as you can imagine the roads were extremely busy with people going to and from work. An ambulance would have definitely found it hard to get through the traffic at that time of day. The North West Air Ambulance was informed of the situation and they rushed to Nick's rescue landing their helicopter in a field next to where the accident took place. The North West Air Ambulance Paramedics dealt with Nick's injuries as well as they could whilst the fire service freed him from the mangled mess.
Once free, Nick was flown immediately to The Royal Blackburn Hospital where a series of investigations and life saving procedures were undertaken. Unfortunately, the impact of the crash had caused Nick to tear his aorta - the main blood vessel which provides the body of its oxygen supply. This needed urgent specialist attention before Nick bled to death.
As if this wasn't enough, Nick sustained several other injuries including a lacerated liver and a haemopneumothorax (a collection of blood and air in the pleural cavity). These potentially fatal conditions added to Nick's already critical condition and several broken ribs, a broken pelvis and two broken arms didn't help matters either! A fracture in Nick's neck complicated matters further.
Wythenshawe Hospital in South Manchester has a specialist Cardio-Thoracic Critical Care Unit. Nick needed a life saving operation to repair the tear in his aorta and Wythenshawe Hospital was the nearest place where this could happen safely. Specialist Vascular Surgeons would operate on Nick that day and night, providing he made it to Manchester alive. Nick's life was against the clock and time was ticking fast.
The journey by ambulance would take a painful half an hour to forty minutes (even with blue flashing lights on), but if Nick was going to travel by ambulance he would hit school traffic in Manchester making it an even longer journey - he couldn't afford the time. The quickest way was by air and so the North West Air Ambulance were called upon once again. They got Nick to Wythenshawe Hospital in around 8 minutes and it was there that he had his life saving surgery.
To this day (and forever more), I am truly thankful for the care, attention and expertise that Nick received from all the professionals involved in saving his life. However (and it saddens me to even think about it), I do believe that had it not been for the North West Air Ambulance, Nick may never have made it to either of the hospitals alive. I owe them BIG TIME!
Nick and I married earlier this year. Our wedding day was a very emotional one as you can probably imagine. Our friends and family joined us in Spain for the celebrations and we had the best day ever - all of which would have been impossible without the North West Air Ambulance. My life changed in the blink of an eye and yours could too. Please donate and help keep this service available to all. You never know when you may need it.
The North West Air Ambulance is a charity and receives no government or lottery funding.
The Great Wall of China Challenge is a 5 day trek. It will take us over watch towers and mountains, through historic battlement stations that are well off the tourist trail! At times, there'll be no-one else in sight. The trekking challenge is hard due to the amount of steps we have to trek up and down each day – apparently it can sometimes take an hour just to trek 1km on this glorious structure.
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