Helicopter heroes help girlfriend

A WOMAN is recovering today after a crash that could have ended in tragedy - if it wasn't for the hard work of her dedicated boyfriend and his team. Lisa O'Reilly, 19, of Mill Road, Badingham, was driving to work on a wet afternoon just outside Saxtead on the A1120 when she lost control of her car on a corner.

A SUFFOLK teenager was today left thanking her boyfriend for his hard work - after the air ambulance was called to her following a nasty road accident.

Lisa O'Reilly, 19, of Mill Road, Badingham, was driving to work on a wet afternoon just outside Saxtead on the A1120 when she lost control of her car on a corner.

The car spun around and ended up wedged into the hedgerow at the side of the road, leaving Miss O'Reilly shocked and badly bruised.

The Air Ambulance attended and treated Miss O'Reilly at the scene, luckily she didn't needed to be airlifted despite serious pain in both her head and neck and having to be cut out of her car by firefighters.

Her boyfriend, Giles Andrews, is a dedicated fundraising coordinator for the Air Ambulance and has been helping to raise the money to keep the service up and running.

Mr Andrews, 28, of Church Lane, Earl Soham, said: “When I heard that Lisa had been in an accident that had required the Air Ambulance to attend I was both worried and relieved.

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“Having spent a day on the Air Ambulance as an observer as part of my work here I was worried that the AA had been called, as I know full well the type of accident it is sent to, but comforted by the fact that she couldn't have been, quite literally, in better hands.

“I was further comforted by the fact that she did not require an airlift as this was a good indication that her injuries were not overly severe.

“As a Fundraising Coordinator I am responsible for helping to raise the money that keeps the Air Ambulance flying.

“Even before Lisa's accident I was 100 per cent convinced of the importance of this service and the work it does.

“The Air Ambulance can reach patients and transport them to hospital far faster than Land Ambulances especially in rural areas such as Lisa's crash location and as everyone knows in many cases time is vital.”

Miss O'Reilly, who works as a nurse carer at Foxearth residential home in Saxtead, is recovering at home with mild concussion and whiplash.

The East Anglian Air Ambulance currently operates two helicopters over the four counties of Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire and has an operating budget in excess of £220,000.

The service is funded by donations and it relies heavily on fundraisers across the south east region.

Have you had a lucky escape after an accident? Would you like to pay tribute the emergency services after they helped you or a loved one in a crisis?

Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.