December 11 2013 Latest news:
Monday, November 4, 2013
A man has praised the emergency services that came to his aid after his foot became jammed in a log splitter.
Tom Gabriel was cutting logs at his home in Staithe Road, Ludham yesterday morning when his foot was dragged in to the machinery.
The 48-year-old was stuck in the log splitter for almost an hour as neighbours and firefighters worked to cut him free.
Mr Gabriel had been wearing steel toe cap boots when the accident happened and said they had protected him from the machinery and he had been lucky not to lose his foot.
He was taken to James Paget University Hospital by ambulance where he was treated for two fractured bones and a deep gash in his toe, which will also require plastic surgery to repair.
Mr Gabriel, who was discharged the same day, said: “I knew what had happened straight away. I saw my foot go in and I shut the log splitter off.
“I was lucky that the log splitter machinery didn’t go in to my foot. It went over my boot and crushed my foot causing two small fractures on two toes.
“It was fortunate I had my boots on, otherwise it could have been a foot off job.
“i always wear steel toe caps when I am working.
“It was painful but until you take your boots off you don’t realise how much or how little damage you have done.”
Mr Gabriel’s calls for help alerted his wife Kate to the accident and attracted the attention of a passer-by.
The family dog Molly also began barking to raise the alarm.
Neighbour Graham Roll was called to the scene along with another man and used his knowledge of farm machinery to begin dismantling the log splitter.
Mr Roll said: “He was very lucky he was wearing a steel toe cap boot. It saved his foot in fact. He crushed his big toe and cut it badly but it could have been a lot worse.”
Firefighters from Martham arrive shortly after 9am and used hydraulic rescue equipment to manually release Mr Gabriels’s foot.
Paramedics from the East of England Ambulance Service and the East Anglian Air Ambulance also attended the scene.
Mr Gabriel said: “I want to say thank you to the rescue services. They were very efficient. The first paramedic arrived within less than ten minutes and the air ambulance was less than 25 minutes.”
Mrs Gabriel added: “All we can say is both the emergency services and friends in the community here in Ludham have been brilliant.”