Bull versus motorbike | Philips Search and Rescue Trust

Bull versus motorbike

You gave Anthony the gift of life


It was an early morning callout for the crew of the Trustpower TECT Rescue Helicopter, when they were dispatched to a rural road in Springdale, west of Te Aroha on 13 November 2015.

Anthony Tantrum had completed his night shift and was riding his motorbike home around 5am. A bull had escaped its paddock and was standing in the middle of the road in the dark as Anthony rode towards it unaware.

Bull and rider collided. Anthony was sent sprawling.  Dazed and disoriented he tried to pick himself up off the road.  He attempted to look around for oncoming headlights or lights from a house somewhere, but there was only darkness.  He collapsed back onto the road.

“My arm was a mangled mess,” he said, but at that stage I couldn’t feel any pain from the internal injuries I had sustained.”

2015-12-04 13.17.58A workmate, only 15 minutes behind him, found him lying on the road and phoned emergency services.

Help came courtesy of the Trustpower TECT Rescue Helicopter. Pilot Liam Brettkelly, flew in and directly on to the roadside, where Anthony was then loaded on board and transported to Waikato Hospital.  Transport by road would have meant up to an hour’s journey in either direction.

“The rescue helicopter was used due to the nature of the patient’s injuries and the distance to hospital,” said Brettkelly.

Anthony spent a week in hospital with multiple injuries including several broken ribs, a punctured lung in two places, a suspected ruptured spleen and blunt force trauma to the neck and shoulder.  He also had a plate with several screws inserted in his arm.

The bull, it seems, only had to nurse a few scratches.

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