A MOTORCYCLIST who was seriously injured in a collision with a vehicle has thanked the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) who flew to his aid.
Glen Fleming, 54, from Lauder, Berwickshire, was riding his bike along the A696, near Otterburn, when he collided with a vehicle which pulled out from the side of the road on November 3, 2017.
The father-of-two said: “I was heading to Skegness for a weekend at Butlins with my friends, which is an annual thing we do. I was having trouble with my car and because the weather was alright I thought I’d take my bike. I headed off from the border of Scotland and everything was going great. There was an HGV in front of me so I overtook it, but then a four-wheel drive vehicle parked at the side of the road pulled out, so I hit into them. I was going at about 50 miles an hour when it happened.
“I rolled back from the vehicle and I was trying to catch my breath. My arms and legs were okay, but I was really struggling to breathe. A nurse pulled up who I think was a community nurse and they started putting me in the recovery position. I had severe pain in the left hand side and I remember an ambulance crew trying to put lines in.
“I could hear a helicopter coming and then I just heard a voice saying ‘Glen it’s ok, you’ve got some injuries and we’re going to take you to the RVI’.”
The GNAAS paramedic and doctor team attended the scene and treated Mr Fleming before airlifting him to the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle where he arrived in a critical condition.
Mr Fleming had nine fractured ribs, a collapsed lung, ruptured spleen, damaged liver and bruising to the kidneys.
He said: “I lost a lot of blood, and it was so serious that if it wasn’t for the air ambulance getting there so quickly I wouldn’t have made it. “
Mr Fleming spent eight days in hospital before he continued his recovery at home for nine weeks.
He said: “The treatment from the minute the incident happened up until I was out of hospital was unbelievable. Everyone was so professional and GNAAS were absolutely fantastic, they saved my life.
“When I first got out of hospital I was quite regular at the GP, getting x-rays and having check-ups. I’m getting better but I’m leaving my bike for a bit. Motorcycles are a big part of my life and I have been riding them since I was 12 so I’ll probably get back on one in the future.”
Last year GNAAS responded to more than 900 call-outs and needed to raise £5.1m. To find out how you can help, please visit www.gnaas.com or call 01325-487263.