Accident Turns New Zealand Truck Driver into Human Balloon
VOA Breaking News
Voice of America
May 25, 2011 at 6:05 am UTC
A truck driver in New Zealand says he feels lucky to be alive after he was impaled by a pipe shooting compressed air and his body literally inflated like a balloon.
Steven McCormack was working on his truck Saturday when he slipped and broke the hose off a connection that feeds air into the truck's hydraulic brake system. The connection pierced McCormack's buttocks as he fell and fed compressed air into his body, which he says blew up “like a football.”
His co-workers rushed to his aid after hearing his screams, turning off the compressed air and packing ice around his swollen neck.
Doctors at a nearby hospital drained fluid from one of McCormack's lungs. They told him the compressed air had separated fat from muscle, and were surprised his skin did not break from the pressure. McCormack says his skin felt “like a pork roast,” hard and crackling on the outside but soft underneath.
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