‘I’m so grateful’ - biker thanks emergency services following life-threatening crash
- Credit: Archant
A biker who suffered life-threatening injuries in a scooter crash has thanked the emergency services who came to his aid.
Andrew Walker, from Diss, was travelling home from the town's train station in August when he collided with a stationary vehicle.
The 56-year-old was thrust straight into his handlebars, rupturing his spleen and liver which caused major internal bleeding.
First on scene was a team from the East of England Ambulance Service, who suspected Mr Walker may have needed a blood transfusion and radioed for an air ambulance.
East Anglian Air Ambulance's (EAAA) Anglia One helicopter arrived at the scene 17 minutes later.
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EAAA is currently part of a clinical trial run by the University of Birmingham called Re-PHILL, which is studying the benefits of administering blood to patients before they arrive at hospital.
Their participation sees blood delivered to them every day by volunteers from the Norfolk Blood Bikes (NBB) charity.
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As a result, Mr Walker received blood at the roadside and was subsequently airlifted to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) in Norwich for emergency surgery.
He was in intensive care for several days and in hospital for two weeks in total, before finally continuing his recovery at home.
"I'm so grateful to the ambulance and air ambulance teams who treated me and made sure that I received the very best care and to the blood bikers who make sure the air ambulance is able to carry blood," said Mr Walker.
"I feel very lucky that my injuries weren't worse, and I have been able to recover relatively quickly with the help of my family."
Mr Walker's story is made all the more poignant by the fact he has been giving blood for almost 20 years, donating around 35 times.
Having now been the recipient of blood, he is even more aware of its importance.
"Being a regular blood donor, you go and give blood but never think one day you may need it yourself," added Mr Walker.
"I would always encourage anyone that can give blood to do so, or to support these incredible charities."
Keith Grisedale, from Norfolk Blood Bikes, added: "Under normal circumstances we never know who the patient is, so to play an integral part in Andrew's recovery is immensely satisfying for us."