A boy, 14 years of age, from Sheffield, England, has survived a horrific car crash after suffering from a fractured skull and spine only because the BMW was able to contact emergency services automatically. Bradley Duke was on his way to school with his brother Hayden who is eleven years old. The kids were on their way to school when their mother – who was driving the BMW – slid on black ice and ended up losing control of the vehicle.
The horrific crash caused the airbags to inflate, thus resulting in the 2014 BMW 3 Series to contact 999 – the emergency services. The mother – Claire Duke – was forty years old when the accident took place. She was unconscious and remembered waking up to emergency services personnel telling her from the dashboard, ‘we know where you are, and help is on its way.’
Within minutes air ambulance had made its way to the crash site, and paramedics placed Bradley in an induced coma before flying him out to the Sheffield Children’s Hospital for an emergency brain surgery. Duke said, ‘I was in a state of complete panic, I had no idea what to do. The seriousness of the situation still hadn’t kicked in because of the shock.’ The mother of three also had an eight-week-old daughter and was unaware of the fact that the emergency services had been called to the crash site thanks to safety features that came with her BMW 3 Series vehicle.
Duke said that the doctors told her that Bradley would have died if he was treated a couple of minutes late. Duke said, ‘He would not be with us now if it weren’t for that safety feature in the car.’ Luckily, Duke and her younger son were able to walk away from the crash with only minor injuries. As per police report, Bradley had taken his seat belt off only moments before the crash. Duke said, ‘I looked back and saw Bradley slumped in the backseat so went to check on him, I could tell he was hurt, but I thought he had probably just bumped his head.’
Bradley is now 17 years old and woke up from the induced coma after a total of nine days. He had to re-learn the basic skills, including reading and writing, after the brain surgery that he underwent. He says, ‘I don’t remember anything about the crash. If it wasn’t for the technology in the car and the doctors in the hospital, I wouldn’t be here today. It’s amazing what technology can do. Nobody knew the car had that feature.’
According to a BMW spokesman, when the airbags are triggered in an accident, BMW will reach out to the car via its onboard SIM card. If BMW doesn’t get any response from the passengers, emergency services are deployed to the crash site right away.