The Dramatic Road Traffic Accident is set to be featured on “Helicopter ER” on Friday 20th October
In an upcoming episode of the acclaimed TV series “Helicopter ER,” Yorkshire Air Ambulance’s critical care team (YAA) race against time in a critical rescue mission as they strive to save the lives of classic car enthusiasts, Geoff Walton and Chris Devos, who’s 1966 Humber Hawk Estate flipped on its side, entrapping the couple, following a serious road traffic accident.
En route to a leisurely lunch at a stately home near Barnsley, their day took a harrowing turn. A high-speed collision with another vehicle, recklessly driving on the wrong side of the road, struck the couple’s vintage car at a crossroad junction. The impact was so forceful that it sent their car careening across the road, and ended up against a tall roadside hedge, leaving their cherished vehicle overturned, with the pair trapped inside.
Dr Steve Rowe and paramedics Mikey Williams and Georgina Godfrey from Yorkshire Air Ambulance responded swiftly to the scene. In a country with nearly 33 million cars on the road, accidents are a common occurrence, and the air ambulance is often a critical lifeline. The speed of the helicopter enabled the medics to arrive at the scene just five minutes after receiving the initial 999 call at their Nostell Air Support Unit in Wakefield.
The vintage design of their classic car raised concerns about the extent of their injuries and made rescue efforts more challenging for fire and rescue services. The paramedics worked diligently to access the patients and provide the urgent care they needed.
Geoff and Chris were without the safety features of modern vehicles, such as airbags, crumple zones, and pretension seat belts, which likely exacerbated the severity of their injuries. Their sole means of restraint was outdated fixed seat belts.
The windshield of their vintage car was partially detached, allowing rescuers to communicate with the couple from the front of the car. Paramedics and rescue teams carefully extracted the couple from the wreckage on stretchers through the rear of the vehicle. They took extra precautions, moving slowly, to prevent any potential broken bones from damaging or puncturing major blood vessels, thereby avoiding further injury.
Their Humber Hawk Estate, dating back to 1966, was part of a historical year marked by a high number of road fatalities. In that year, the UK witnessed nearly 8,000 recorded road deaths, a stark contrast to today’s improved safety standards.
Once freed, the adrenaline of the crash wore off and Geoff’s pain significantly intensified. He required morphine, a powerful pain relief drug, to alleviate the discomfort, which centred around his hips.
After both patients were stabilised, they were transported to a local district hospital via a land ambulance for further treatment.
Geoff faced a six-month-long recovery journey, having sustained three hairline cracks to his pelvis, which are expected to heal naturally, while Chris broke her left arm, which was subsequently casted. Although the couple are set to make a full recovery, their beloved vintage car was irreparably damaged, leading them to replace it with a 1959 Humber Hawk Saloon.
Geoff expressed his heartfelt gratitude for the swift and professional response from Yorkshire Air Ambulance, stating, “We owe a huge debt of gratitude to the fantastic Yorkshire Air Ambulance team. They were incredibly quick and skilled, and it truly made all the difference. I also want to express my heartfelt thanks to the other rescue teams who helped us get out of that car on a very tough day. I’m grateful for the morphine that helped blur the memory of the accident. But what really matters is that my wife and I are okay, and we both feel incredibly lucky that our injuries weren’t more serious. It could have been a lot worse.
He continued, “Losing my vintage car was a real disappointment – They are very rare in the UK. However, I’ve since replaced it with a more powerful Super Snipe, and we’re eagerly anticipating new adventures and hopefully, accident-free memories!”