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Edward Royle

On Monday 18th June 2018, Edward Royle said goodbye to his wife and left for work on a local farm in Ludlow.

Edward travelled to work with a plan for the day, to use a digger to create a large hole, ready for the delivery of a concrete tank later in the afternoon. What Edward didn’t plan, was a freak accident to leave him with life changing injuries, or for the next time he would see his wife, to be as he was being loaded into an air ambulance helicopter.

Edward explains: “I’d just had my lunch near the hole I’d dug, and was stood watching the unloading of a concrete tank. The next thing I remember is being in the bottom of the hole.”

Edward fell approximately 13 feet into the hole, sustaining multiple injuries including a broken eye socket, cracked ribs and a bleed on the brain. The numerous emergency services were called, and due to the severity and location of the incident, the Midlands Air Ambulance from RAF Cosford was sent to the scene.

Critical care paramedic Rob Davies, doctor Dave Baltazar and pilot Chris Levey, were on duty that day and arrived on scene within 13 minutes, from a previous incident in Shrewsbury.  

Rob recalls: “Due to the location of the incident scene at the top of a steep hill, with nowhere safe to land, Chris made the decision to land at the bottom of the hill on open land.

“We loaded ourselves up with as much equipment as we could, and headed off up the hill. Once we got to Edward, he was very quiet and didn’t seem to be responding well. I climbed down to Edward and started to analyse his condition. Dave stayed above the hole to assist with equipment.

“I took a set of observations, inserted an intravenous line and administered morphine for the pain, and ondansatron which is an anti-sickness drug.

“I also got him onto a scoop stretcher, secured him with straps and placed a set of head blocks around his head in case of a neck break. I then attached a set of lifting straps to the stretcher and with the help of the fire brigade, we lifted him out of the hole and down to the aircraft.”

Rob and Dave continued to monitor Edward throughout the 18 minute flight to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, administering further pain relief to ensure Edward was as comfortable and stable as possible.

Edward spent two days in hospital, attending as an outpatient for further treatment for the following six months. In total, he sustained eight injuries, including a small break in his back, a broken nose and a knee injury which concerned doctors due to the extent it was bleeding, as Edward is a diabetic.

Just one day after the accident, Edward’s friend, Gerry King, decided to organise a fundraiser for MAAC after hearing about the incident. Gerry organised a dressage to music event at Kings Equestrian in Bromyard, which raised over £2,000. Gerry, Edward and his wife Mandy visited the RAF Cosford airbase to present the donation to Rob Davies and Chris Levey.

Edward concludes: “It was really wonderful to meet Rob and Chris again, in much better circumstances! Without these guys, I may not even be here to tell my tale, I just can’t thank them enough.”

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