Dad pays tribute to medical crews who battled to save his life after horror crash

Medics work to save Adam's life
Medics work to save Adam's life

A grateful Peterborough dad spent Christmas opening presents with his children - less than two years after he nearly died in a horror motorbike accident.

Adam Shailer broke 20 bones in his body in the terrifying collision, involving his motorbike and a car in August last year.

Adam and his family

Adam and his family

Medics treating him described Adam as ‘the most sick person I have ever treated who has survived’ after his heart rate dropped to a staggering 20 beats per minute in the accident in August last year.

He was put in a medically induced coma for nearly two weeks, and stayed in hospital for four months during his treatment.

Adam, a Ministery of Defence civil servant, whose son was just two weeks old at the time of the incident is still recovering from the crash – but has paid an emotional tribute to the medics who wouldn’t give up on him as he fought for his life at the side of the road and in hospital – and gave him the chance to spend a lifetime of Christmases with his family.

Adam (35) from Stilton, said: “How do you thank them? I don’t have the words, I couldn’t put a price on it!”

Adam in hospital

Adam in hospital

The accident happened at Abbots Ripton near Huntingdon in August 2016.

He was riding his bike when he fell off at speed, and was run over by a car.

When the Magpas Air Ambulance enhanced medical doctor and paramedic team got to him by helicopter, he was fighting for his life; lying on a grass verge and barely able to make a sound. Magpas Air Ambulance Dr Andy Lindsay remembers Adam asking if he was going to make it and Dr Lindsay said: “You are categorically not going to die”.

However, Adam’s condition deteriorated very quickly and he soon became unconscious.

Adam with Andy Lindsay and Dan Read

Adam with Andy Lindsay and Dan Read

His heart rate was only 20 beats per minute, which a Magpas spokemsan said is essentially as low as it can get before someone dies and blood pressure plummeted.

Five East of England Ambulance Service paramedics worked alongside the team from Magpas to save his life.

In order to save Adam’s life there and then, the Magpas team anaesthetised Adam, putting him in a chemically induced coma at the side of the road.

Dr Lindsay and Paramedic Dan Read also performed a thoracotomy (a surgical incision to release air trapped in the chest cavity) on both sides of his chest. They then got him into a land ambulance and monitored his condition all the way to Addenbrooke’s Hospital.

Dan said: “I’ll always remember the day of Adam’s incident. The East of England ambulance paramedic crew did an excellent job, but Adam also needed vital hospital level care there and then – Magpas Air Ambulance are here to deliver that to patients in their ultimate moment of need.”

Once at Addenbrooke’s, Adam was treated for a catalogue of injuries - including broken ribs, a broken sternum, air in chest cavity, bruising and bleeding around his lungs, a lacerated liver and kidney, squashed bowel in two places. He had nine fractures to his pelvis - in total it was broken into 29 pieces in what’s called an ‘open book’ pelvic fracture. A ureter was also nearly disconnected and one of his knees was completely broken.

Dan said: “Adam is the most sick person I have ever treated who has survived”.

Emergency Medical Technician Colin Court, from the East of England Ambulance Service, said: “It was a very serious job and for a patient to survive something that serious is quite unusual.”

He was in a coma for 13 days at hospital, and was only able to leave to head for home on December 18 last year – just in time to spend Christmas with his new son James and his daughter Sabrina.

Dan said: “Adam is the most sick person I have ever treated who has survived”.

Emergency Medical Technician Colin Court, from the East of England Ambulance Service, said: “It was a very serious job and for a patient to survive something that serious is quite unusual.”

Adam, said: “If I hadn’t been alive, the memory would have faded for my daughter and I don’t think my son would have had any memories of me”.

Adam’s wife Rachael also paid tribute to the work of the medical crews from Magpas Air Ambulance and the East of England Ambulance Service, and said: “Giving my children their dad, giving me my husband…the best gift ever!”

A police investigation concluded no-one was at fault for the collision. Magpas Air Ambulance is not a state-funded service and relies on generous public donations to continue saving lives.

For more information about Magpas and the work they carry out, and how to help the charity, visit www.magpas.org.uk