Newlywed cyclist hit by lorry at Hackney Wick asks for blood—12 years on
A cyclist who survived being hit by a lorry and dragged along the road for 200 yards is urging the public to sign up to be blood donors and help save lives like hers.
University lecturer Laura Camfield, who had just been married three days, celebrates her 12th anniversary on Sunday—lucky to be alive after her almost-fatal accident in September, 2000.
Laura was cycling to work from her home in Hackney Wick when she was struck by a lorry and was dragged under.
“There was the ghastly moment when I realised what was happening,” Laura recalls. “I was pulled underneath and was dragged a distance before the lorry stopped—it was very, very painful.”
Laura, now 39, was in intensive care for 10 days at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel.
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Her family were told to prepare for the worst—she had a broken hip, femur, pelvis and ankle, damage to her optical nerve and serious wounds to her lungs and right leg.
“It was looking like I wasn’t going to survive it,” Laura recalls. “My last memory was going to surgery and asking my husband not to forget to call my friend and tell her I can’t meet up with her.”
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But Laura pulled through, largely thanks to intensive surgery and massive blood transfusions. She finally left hospital two months later.
Now more than a decade on, Laura hopes her story inspires people to give blood—she was a regular donor herself before the accident.
“I’m probably ‘in debt’ with the amount of blood I was given,” she added. “I needed more than I ever had the chance to give before.”
Volunteer donors must be between 17 and 65, weigh over 7st 12lbs (50kg) and be in general good health. There is no upper age limit if donors have given blood in the last two years.
Appointments can be made on the Donor Line on 030-0123 2323, or online at www.blood.co.uk.
There are also ‘drop in’ donor sessions in east London including tomorrow (Friday) at Mile End Ecology Pavilion in Grove Road, 1-3pm and 4.30-730pm, at Canary Wharf’s East Wintergarden, Bank Street, the following Friday (Sept 21) 9.30-11.30am and 1-4pm, at the Isle of Dogs on October 9 at the Docklands Settlement, 197 East Ferry Road, Cubitt Town, 1-3pm and 4.30-7.30pm, and in Shoreditch on November 1 at Perseverence Works mobility unit at 38 Kingsland Road, 10am-12:20pm and 2-4.40pm.