Photos show horrific injuries suffered by man who was impaled through chest by wooden post after car crash in South Shields

WARNING: This article contains graphic photos of injuries

Saturday, 16th November 2019, 8:00 am
Updated Saturday, 16th November 2019, 3:59 pm
Mr Stephenson is slowly making a good recovery and credits Great North East Ambulance Service for saving his life.

The rescue of a man who was impaled through the chest by a fence will appear on a national TV show following the region’s air ambulance service.

Richard Stephenson, 23, of Workington, was a passenger in his friend’s car when it went off road and crashed into a fence in his hometown of South Shields in October, 18 2018. He was impaled through the chest by a wooden fence post through the passenger side of the car – the driver was not injured.

This Sunday, November 17, the episode of Emergency Helicopter Medics will air the episode of Richards incident, on More4.

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Richard Stephenson from Shields was impaled by a fence near Workington where he now lives

Dr John Ferris, who works for Great North Air Ambulance, was one of the first to arrive on scene, he said: “As I approached the car I could hear Richard moaning and began to feel reassured that he must have escaped serious injury.

“But as I came around the side of the car it became quickly apparent that this job was going to be that once in a career job where your skills are stretched to the maximum and beyond.”

Richard was given was given ketamine and removed from the car.

Great North Air Ambulance Service paramedic Andy Dalton said: “Dr Ferris had already formulated a plan that he would need to be given a general anaesthetic at the scene so that we could treat the chest injuries he had suffered as the post had gone through his chest.

Dr Ferris had already formulated a plan that he would need to be given a general anaesthetic at the scene.

Once Richard was stabilised, he was taken to the helicopter and flown to the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle.

Dr Ferris added: “I remember watching the helicopter fly away from scene thinking that it would be a miracle if he were to survive.”

Richard then underwent an operation to remove the wood, but he ended up losing part of his right lung before he went into intensive care.

After spending four weeks in hospital, Mr Stephenson is slowly making a good recovery and credits Great North Air Ambulance for saving his life.

Richard said: “If it wasn’t for the air ambulance I definitely wouldn’t be here.”