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Feb 15

A Teesside teenager who suffered multiple injuries in an horrific car crash will feature in a new BBC television series.

The dramatic rescue of student Elly Latif will be shown in tomorrow’s (February 17) episode of Countryside 999 on BBC 1.

Elly, now 20, had spent a day at Flamingoland theme park, North Yorkshire, with her best friend and boyfriend. She was driving back to her Stockton-on-Tees home in driving rain when the accident happened.

"It was pouring with rain and although I was not driving very fast I must have taken this bend too quickly," said Elly.

“When I braked the wheels just locked and we slid across the road straight into the path of a lorry."

Countryside 999 follows the long rescue operation to get the badly injured Elly out of the car. Boyfriend Daniel Thomas broke a toe and friend Billie Taylor cracked a vertebrae and were taken to hospital by road ambulance.

But Elly was airlifted by the Yorkshire Air Ambulance to York District Hospital with multiple injuries including a broken femur, a shattered and dislocated elbow, broken ribs, bruised lungs and facial injuries.

"I thought the air ambulance was just used to rescue people in remote areas or from mountains. They were just great,” added Elly, who is studying biomedical science at the University of Lancaster.

"If I had had to go by road it would have been much longer.  Also with the amount of pain I was in the bumpy roads would have been just awful."

Elly spent two weeks in hospital and was wheelchair bound for a further four months, missing a whole term of her first year at university. It has been a long recovery but she feels very lucky: "It's been hard. I had to do a lot of work from home and took my end of year exams in August.

"But it could have been a lot worse and I'm really grateful to all the emergency services for everything they did for me."

Yorkshire Air Ambulance is an independent charity providing a rapid response emergency service to five million people across Yorkshire. It needs to raise £9,990 each day to keep its two helicopters flying.

Without any direct Government funding the only help the charity receives is the secondment of its paramedics from the Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust.

Elly’s dramatic rescue will feature in Countryside 999 on BBC 1 tomorrow morning at 11am. The new series follows the emergency services in rural Britain who negotiate huge distances, difficult terrain and often dreadful weather to care for and protect the public.

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