A JCB worker is being hailed as a hero after saving the life of a biker injured in a collision.
Heath Nix, who works in the Loadall business unit at JCB’s World Headquarters in Rocester, was driving home when he saw the man sitting in the road with his damaged 500cc bike nearby.
On approaching, he found that Steve Read’s left leg had been catastrophically injured and he was bleeding profusely. He ran to his boot to get a towel to stem the bleeding. Then, before the emergency services arrived, he used his belt as a tourniquet.
Heath’s quick actions ensured the 74-year-old retired science teacher survived to be taken by Midlands Air Ambulance to Royal Stoke University Hospital.
Steve, from Forsbrook, responded to treatment at the hospital and, after having his leg amputated, has progressed to undergoing physiotherapy. He has since contacted reluctant hero Heath by phone and thanked him for saving his life.
After finishing work on September 22, Heath was driving in the Cubley area of Derbyshire around 4.45pm when he saw Steve sitting in the road with his helmet still on. His Royal Enfield Bullet motorbike was lying on its side and a car which had been in the collision was nearby.
Fifty-one-year-old Heath, from Draycott, near Derby, said: “I stopped, put my hazard lights on and went to ask Steve how he was. I immediately noticed how bad he was – his injury looked so bad it was as if he had stepped on a landmine.
“Another onlooker had called the emergency services so I reassured Steve that help was on the way and I went to my car for a towel to stem the bleeding. As we waited for the ambulance to arrive, I made him comfortable, lying him down in the middle of the road with his head on my jacket.
“He was in a very bad way, losing a lot of blood, so I applied my belt as a tourniquet at the top of his thigh to stem the flow.
“When the paramedics arrived, they said that without the tourniquet he would not have made it to hospital. I’m really glad there has been a good outcome for Steve. I couldn’t have left him there – I had to stop and do the best I could.”
Father-of-two Steve, who has ridden motorbikes safely for 56 years, said: “I knew I was dying as I sat on the road because I could see the blood coming out. I lost four pints in total due to the fact that my femoral artery was ruptured. If Heath hadn’t applied the tourniquet when he did, I would not be here.
“He did not have to stop and do what he did. He did everything correctly and he did not panic. He was calming me down and he did a phenomenal job, reassuring me all the time. Heath should be recognised as a hero.”
Steve’s wife Patricia added: “I cannot thank Heath enough – he’s our hero who has given us happiness beyond belief.”