A teenager who ploughed his motorcycle into the back of a lorry only survived his horrific injuries because the vehicle was carrying – three medically trained SOLDIERS.
Lucky Jake Fletcher, 16, lost control of his vehicle before crashing into a double length truck being used by the Army for HGV driver training.
Jake, of Exeter, Devon, broke several bones in the horror smash and was left with his leg wrapped round his body.
But luckily three soldiers who were in the back of the lorry heard the crash and jumped out before administering life-saving first aid.
Sergeant Major Rich Clements, Sergeant Nick Trivett and Sergeant Darren Dowle (corr) used medical skills normally deployed on the battlefield.
Jake was in so much pain he kept trying to stand up which doctors say could have killed him – but the trio of heroes made sure he didn’t move.
He was later rushed to the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital by paramedics and treated for a broken collar bone which needed surgery and a metal pin.
Jake also suffered a compound break to his leg and needs plastic surgery to have skin grafts for his thigh.
His mum Melissa Driscoll, 38, an NHS worker, said the three soldiers saved her son’s life.
She said: ”Without the soldiers being there, it would have been a different scenario for Jake. To have them there when it happened – I couldn’t have asked for more.
”He was trying to stand up and if he had managed that to get up, God knows what damage could have been done. He could have been dead.”
Sergeant Major Clements, 39, who has served in Northern Ireland, Bosnia and Iraq, said the soldiers put into practice their extensive first aid training.
He said: ”Jake’s body flew the length of the lorry and his bike went another half a length again. His leg was wrapped up around his body.
”It was a very nasty sight but we are trained to deal with that kind of thing. He was lucky not to have been killed. The most important thing was keeping him still as he kept trying to move.
”We gave him reassurance. He knew he was badly hurt and started screaming out in pain. The paramedic told us that if it wasn’t for us being there, he probably would have died.”
The soldiers, who have almost 70 years of Army experience between them, have since been to visit Jake in hospital.
Sergeant Dowle, 37, said: ”You train for this kind of thing, but you don’t expect to see it in that environment. It was quite horrific for a young lad.”
Jake’s mum added: ”I have told Jake that he will never ride a motorbike again as long as he lives under my roof.
”What happened to Jake is a massive advert for how careful young people have got to be on the roads.
”The injuries he has got are horrific. I hope his accident will stop at least one youngster from driving like a lunatic.”