Sarah’s Story

Sarah Simmonds has taught riding and looked after horses all of her life.  She lives alone, spending most of her day with dogs and horses, and at the time of her accident she was looking after seven horses and ponies. Below she tells us how the Air Ambulance came to her rescue when she suffered a nasty injury and there was no one around to help her.

October 3rd was a lovely warm day and I was out in the fields with the tractor and dogs, filling up water troughs and doing general jobs that needed doing.  I was alone that day, which isn’t unusual.  I decided to take the rugs off two horses in the field, which I’ve often done before.  As I walked across to one of them,  she started to walk away from me, and as I circled around to get in front of her, she lashed out at me and caught my leg.  I almost saw it coming – there was nothing I could do.

I have never in my life experienced the pain that I experienced as I lowered myself to the ground.  The dogs rushed up thinking I was having a game!  Luckily I had my mobile phone with me and I rang the closest people I could think of, and fortunately they were in.  Gareth and Janet Jones came to my rescue and called the ambulance which arrived very quickly.

I’m not sure how long it took for the Air Ambulance to arrive as time meant nothing, but it felt like a very short time.  The horses had been put in another paddock so that the helicopter could land in the field.  I think we were all in total shock.  I really don’t know what I would have done if I hadn’t been airlifted to the hospital.

The journey to the hospital was very quick. I wasn’t very comfortable as I was put on a board in case I had hurt my spine, but I wasn’t in pain.  The Air Ambulance crew were wonderful and very reassuring.  They didn’t leave me until I had been assessed in the hospital and they all came to find me to say goodbye.  I was sad to see them go as they had been so supportive.  I have always thought that the Air Ambulance is a wonderful service, but since my accident I can’t find words to express how I feel.

I’ve done a month on crutches as I’ve broken my thigh bone in three places and I have a metal rod from my hip to my knee.   I’m hopping along fine and manage to help muck out the horses and do the garden.  I’m determined this accident isn’t going to get me down.  Once I have the all clear I’m going to get my life sorted out and perhaps stand back for a year before I decide how I’m going to go on.

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