Rescuers revive 'dead' crash victim
DARREN Archibald yesterday climbed into an overturned car and saw the critically injured driver “die” before his eyes.
In the seconds the man stopped breathing, motorists were able to release him from his seatbelt and drag him from the wreck to revive him.
Late last night the driver, a 27-year-old South Korean tourist, was still fighting for his life in Rockhampton Hospital after suffering a broken neck and internal injuries from the crash near Marmor, about 50km south of Rockhampton.
Mr Archibald was on his way home along the Bruce Highway to Mackay at 2.40pm when he saw the blue Commodore go out of control directly in front of him.
“It was right in front of us, fishtailing across the road,” he said.
“It came into our lane and I had to brake heavily to miss it. It went in front of us and into a culvert and rolled about three times.
Still suffering from shock, Mr Archibald said he told him wife to call Triple 0 while he reversed his car and ran to the other vehicle.
“I could see the other passenger and he was yelling, 'Let me out, let me out', in broken South Korean. I released his seatbelt and dragged him out first,” he said.
“I climbed in the back passenger seat and stayed with the driver until police arrived.
“He did die in the vehicle - his tongue swelled up and he stopped breathing.
“He was hanging by his neck and in tremendous pain, we couldn't move him.”
Mr Archibald said when the man stopped breathing a nurse, who was there, said they should free him quickly and start CPR.
The man was revived and paramedics arrived and took over.
Police Inspector Marcus Hill said it was not known why the driver lost control while overtaking another vehicle.
No other cars were involved and all other passengers in the car were uninjured.
The driver was flown to Rockhampton Hospital by the RACQ Capricorn Helicopter Rescue Service in a critical condition.
The Morning Bulletin spoke to Mr Archibald a few hours after the accident, while he was still travelling back to Mackay.
He said he was still coming to terms with events and allowed his wife to drive the rest of the way.
Reflecting on his actions, he said: “It didn't even occur to me that the vehicle could have exploded because it was leaking fuel.”
Mr Archibald said he would certainly hug his family tight when got home.