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Rescued Woman Praises Emergency Services

25 October 2008

Rescued Woman Praises Emergency Services

The 50 year old Taupo woman rescued from thick bush after a mountain bike riding fall earlier this week yesterday (Fri) urged people to support the emergency services who came to her rescue.

Speaking from her bed at Waikato Hospital Joanne Nixon said without the help of an off-duty nurse, a paramedic and the Lion Foundation Rescue Helicopter, she would probably not have survived the cycling accident.

Mrs Nixon, an accounts manager with Allsports Distribution in Taupo, was out riding on Wednesday afternoon in Wairakei Forest near Craters of the Moon in Taupo with work colleagues. She was wearing a helmet. The last thing she remembers as she went into the forest was telling other social club members she would bring up the rear as she was accompanied by the family dog Connor.

Her sister Vicki Reardon said the riders were going down a section of the track known as Fast Eddie when Mrs Nixon went over the front of the handlebars onto the track. A nurse, who was not part of the group, was right there.

“Perhaps it saved Janine’s life but she came across it right at the time it happened,” said Ms Reardon.

Because it was thick bush with too many trees and obstructions, the only way in for emergency staff was by mountain bike. A St John paramedic called Keith cycled in and stabilised her. Mrs Nixon was unconscious throughout.

Then she was stretchered out to the rescue helicopter which transported her first to Taupo Hospital and then onto Waikato Hospital accompanied by her husband Wayne.

She was in Waikato’s intensive care unit for 36 hours and yesterday transferred to the hospital’s neurological ward where she is under the care of noted neurologist, Dr Venkataraman Balakrishnan.

“The left hand side of her body is not up to scratch and her left eye, the nerve’s not working at the moment. But that’s brain injuries for you,” said Ms Reardon. . Mrs Nixon remembers nothing of the accident but her husband praised everyone involved.

“They’ve done a fantastic job. The guy who cycled in, was unbelievable.”

Mrs Nixon said she felt fine thanks to the efforts of the emergency services.

“I’d just like to thank everybody and everyone who’s done something. It’s well worth contributing to help (rescue) people. You don’t know when your turn’s going to come, you don’t know. It pays to give up to these sorts of people who give up their time. It pays to give everything you can to these people to say thank you, thank you very much. I couldn’t be in a better place, with the people here helping me and my family.”

Mrs Nixon is a mother of three with a grandchild due next month.

“I’m so thankful I’m going to be around for that,” she said.


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