Christmas Eve crash A21
Late on Christmas Eve a lone car travelling southbound on the A21 skidded off the road due to excessive surface water, leaving the driver and passenger with potentially serious injuries. In heavy rain and working 10 feet down a heavily overgrown bank, rescuers joined forces to stabilise the vehicle and attend to the casualties. The driver had managed to self extricate himself and make his way up the muddy bank to attract the emergency services who had been searching the area for nearly 20-minutes trying to find the car, so heavy was the undergrowth.
Assessed on scene by a paramedic and SIMCAS nurse Tony Kemp the decision was taken to remove the roof and extricate the patient on a long board so as to protect her back and neck.
The woman was trapped in total for around 2-hours and in a cooperative effort from the first, ambulance and police and fire and rescue services on scene successfully brought her up the steep bank using a human chain of fire-fighters who passed the patient on the long-board to the waiting ambulance trolley cot. Tony said “This was a huge cooperative effort on the part of everyone, in the very worst of weather from late Christmas Eve into the early hours of Christmas morning”. Both patients were transported by separate ambulance to the Tunbridge Wells hospital at Pembury. Tony also commented on the camaraderie of all involved. “At some point early into Christmas day the whisper of “Happy Christmas” was exchanged amongst the rescuers as they worked together.”