Farmer's Air Lift Results in A Reunion and A Cheque for Devon Air Ambulance

Tuesday, 11 May, 2010

left to right: Ken Isherwood of FarmWeb, farmer, John Rossiter, Paramedic Mark Langley and David Graham of Devon Insurance

A company's decision to support the Devon Air Ambulance Trust resulted in a farmer coming face to face with the paramedic who helped save his life.

Farmer John Rossiter was reversing his fork lift along a slope when it overturned, causing him serious injury. The Devon Air Ambulance was called and whisked him to hospital where it was discovered his injuries included a fracture to the base of his skull.

Mr Rossiter, who farms at Kingsbridge in Devon, has since made a full recovery, and as a thank you for the prompt and speedy rescue, £2,000 was presented to the charity funded service by FarmWeb, his insurance providers. FarmWeb is the country's largest network of independent agricultural insurance providers, operating through more than 70 brokers across the UK.

Ken Isherwood, FarmWeb's Operations Director explained: "We specialise in providing insurance for the agricultural sector and so wanted to support a charity which has particular relevance to farmers. It's no secret that they have a high accident rate and are often working in remote, difficult-to-access locations -the Air Ambulance could therefore mean the difference to them between life and death. We contacted our member brokers to see if any had a connection and David Graham of Devon Insurance got in touch to tell us about the rescue of Mr Rossiter, who is one of his clients."

As a result, it was decided to make a thank you donation at the Trust's headquarters. Contact was made with the charity, who traced Paramedic Mark Langley - a member of Mr Rossiter's rescue team and the visit was organised. Mr Rossiter, his wife Sally, insurance broker David Graham and his wife Vivian and Mr Isherwood enjoyed a tour, during which Mr Langley accepted a cheque for £2,000 on behalf of Devon Air Ambulance Trust.

Mrs Rossiter commented: "An accident like this certainly changes your life. John hadn't met Mark until today because he was unconscious when they air lifted him away so it's been a very special day.

"Farmers are always working with machinery and think nothing of it and using the fork lift is just a regular part of the working day. You never think these things are going to happen, but we certainly have cause to be extremely grateful to the Devon Air Ambulance."

Helena Holt, Chief Executive of the Devon Air Ambulance Trust said: "Because of patient confidentiality, we don't know who we have helped, and therefore have to rely on patients getting in touch with us, just like Mr Rossiter did, via FarmWeb. It is so nice to be able to find out how patients are after what has been an extremely traumatic event. Because of the nature of our county, the Devon Air Ambulance comes into its own, especially in rural farming locations such as this."

She added "We would like to thank FarmWeb and Mr Rossiter for this fantastic donation. In real terms, this donation will pay for at least two further missions, making the difference for two other patients, their families and their friends."

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