May 21 2013 Latest news:
By BEN WOODS
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
A Norfolk man who spent years donating blood has told of how an emergency blood donor saved his life after he lost his arm in an industrial accident.
Chris Spinks was left fighting for his life on March 19 when a building collapsed on to his left arm while working on a garage in Cromer.
The 50-year-old brick layer, of Thorpe End, then faced a two-hour ordeal as the emergency services endured a frantic fight to dig him free before air lifting him to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital.
Describing the accident, he said: “We were underpinning a Grade II listed garage and we had just finished digging the last hole when the building collapsed on top of me.
“I was just trying to keep awake, but my arm was fractured and crushed by such big pieces of debris.
“My colleague helped to keep me upright until the medics turned up and from that point I don’t really remember what happened.” Mr Spinks, who is married with two children, said it was the generosity of blood donors that meant he was still standing today after he received 14 units of blood and underwent four operations.
“If there were not the blood stocks I needed it could have been a different story,” he said.
“It has been difficult to adapt to having no arm and it makes things twice as hard to do, but the thought that keeps me going is that I could have been dead, but I am not, I am alive and it is the people that gave blood that helped me.”
The accident came after Mr Spinks gave 16 units of blood over the past eight years during regular blood donor sessions in Norwich.
And now he is urging more people to step forward and do their bit to boost donor numbers across East Anglia.
He added: “The process of giving blood is quite simple. The worst bit is when they prick the end of your finger – for me the needle was never a bother.
“All I can say is that if you are given the chance to give blood then that is what you should do.”