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Suzuki Vitara Accident: Black Ice Crash Jaws of Life
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My wife, 5 month old son and I were in an a car accident on Nov. 18th, 2005. We were on our way from Toronto to Ottawa for a Christening when my wife hit some black ice around Kingston, Ontario, lost control and we were t-boned by a tractor trailer. I suffered a serious head injury which knocked me unconscious for about 10 minutes, broken ulna and radial bones in my right arm, a broken foot, a grade one liver laceration and 8 inches of my bowel had to be removed as it was necrotic(dying). I was trapped in the car for 45 minutes before being removed by the "jaws of life" from the Kingston Fire Dept. Between the head injury, the dead part of my bowel and the liver laceration I required 3 blood transfusions.
My wife had a broken shoulder from the passenger seat hitting her (if you look at the one picture you can see the passenger seat on top of the centre console) My son had a skull fracture, but since his skull was still developing it absorbed much of the impact. We are all doing fine right now for the most part, although I am still not back to work full-time. My wife was driving a Suzuki Vitara. I was sitting directly behind the passenger seat. The scary thing is that the car seat was installed by the OPP at one of their "safety blitzes" directly behind the passenger seat where I was sitting when the accident happened.
As soon as I saw where it had been placed when I got home from work I removed it, and installed it in the middle of the back seat. After the accident, my wife called the OPP central headquarters to advise them what had happened and that a car seat should not be installed on any side of a small vehicle - only the centre. I do not think my son would still be alive if he were sitting behind the front seat. The moral of our story is that you should trust your instincts and make sure your car seats are installed properly and in the correct position. Not to mention the obvious - that wearing your seat belt can and will save your life.
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