A DRIVER seriously injured in a horrific motorway crash in Leeds a year ago was today set to be reunited with the firefighters who saved his life.
Delivery driver Thomas Dulson was due to travel to Garforth Fire Station today (Mon Dec 3) to thank the “amazing” crews who performed the
Mr Dulson’s van hit ice and span off the A1(M) and ended up hanging from a bridge over the A64 in the early hours last December 1.
Mr Dulson, 24, had suffered two broken legs and was fully conscious as he hung upside down in the driver’s seat.
Fire crews had to secure the van as it hung off the edge of the bridge.
Crews then had to devise a plan to release Mr Dulson without making his serious injuries any worse.
Firefighters used specialist cutting equipment to tunnel through the side of the vehicle to get to Mr Dulson.
Incident commander Phil Swallow, of Garforth Fire Station, crawled in and spoke to Mr Dulson before a paramedic assessed his injuries.
Mr Dulson was conscious throughout the his ordeal, which lasted almost two hours.
In the past year, Mr Dulson has had five operations to try and reconstruct his legs.
Surgeons have inserted metal pins into the bones of his left leg to help it heal properly and he has undergone a skin graft.
Mr Dulson said: “I literally lost control and careered into a bridge.
“I don’t remember much after that and the next thing I knew I woke up hanging upside down in my cab.
“When the crews arrived from West Yorkshire Fire Service they were amazing.
“They kept me so calm talking me through everything and trying to make everything as easy as possible on me. I can’t actually put into words how good they were.
“It’s been a long road to recovery for me and I still feel nervous about the thought of getting back in a van, but I know things could have been much worse.
“I’ve wanted to come and see the crews for ages. A year on, and on the mend, feels like a good time.
“All I can say to them is thank you.”
A total of 14 firefighters were involved in the rescue
Crews from Garforth Fire Station were first on the scene, followed by Wetherby, Killingbeck and Cleckheaton Fire Station’s technical rescue unit.
Mr Dulson hopes to return to work in the new year.