Budleigh OAP in freak accident

PUBLISHED: 11:09 12 June 2010 | UPDATED: 11:33 18 June 2010

Neighbours in Stoneborough Lane have spoken of the moments after a Budleigh Salterton pensioner was run over by her own car in a freak accident.

Neighbours in Stoneborough Lane have spoken of the moments after a Budleigh Salterton pensioner was run over by her own car in a freak accident.

Residents were amazed by the 85-year-old's state of calm directly after the accident - where, lying where she fell on her drive, she began introducing a new resident to an old neighbour.

The elderly woman, named locally as Pat Cant, on Saturday had been loading her rescue dog, Polly, into the passenger-side foot well of her red Renault Clio for a trip to the vet when the car rolled backwards, knocking the pensioner to the ground.

Suffering severe injuries to her arm - exposing her bone and tendons - and leg, the pensioner was airlifted to the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital, where she remains.

The Journal understands she has undergone an operation and skin graft.

It is believed Mrs Cant suffered a heart attack on Saturday evening, and was moved to intensive care because of the severity of her injuries.

Neighbour Sue Noblett, 69, said: "We were with the Pickfords van. We only moved here a couple of months ago. One of the removal men said 'oh my God that woman just fell under the car' and we ran across.

"She was lying on the floor and said 'hello, we haven't met before', then started to introduce us to her next door neighbour!

"She wasn't screaming out loud or moaning. She was very composed. "The WPC was speaking to her, and she was as clear as anything.

"She was bleeding quite badly from her arm and leg and I covered her because I didn't want her to see her wound."

Builder Steve Richardson, 55, who has carried out repairs for the pensioner and lives opposite, moved the car from his garden wall where the vehicle came to rest after rolling backwards down Mrs Cant's sloped drive.

He said: "She's a dear old soul. She was totally conscious and introduced the people who have moved in to neighbours while she was lying there.

"I would imagine the injuries she got were because the car hit her fast.

"The door was still open. It must have flipped her. She wouldn't have stood a chance. She's not good on her legs. She's fallen over several times and we have had to pick her up."

The Devon Air Ambulance landed at Budleigh's cricket ground from North Devon within 13 minutes.

Stoneborough Lane was closed for two hours while the police and paramedics helped the injured pensioner.

In that time officers tried in vain to replicate how the car could have rolled backwards over Mrs Cant.

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