Fishing is not widely considered to be a dangerous sport, but try telling that to Peter Inskip who last week suffered the type of injury more at home in a horror film.
The Uxbridge-based carp angler cheated death on the banks of Boyer Leisure’s Mayfield Lake when a 3oz lead travelling at incredible speed shot through his neck.
The near-fatal injury happened after Peter accidentally cast his rig into a tree 80yds out, and then pulled hard on his line in an attempt to retrieve his lead.
Suddenly, the line gave way, his shock leader operated in a bungee type fashion, and the lead flew back towards the bank at top speed, striking Peter just above his collarbone – an area containing several vital organs and arteries.
“At first, I didn’t realise exactly what had happened. I felt winded, but when I got my breath back and felt my neck I realised there was line going directly into me. I never even considered that the lead could be in me, but when I checked a second time I could feel it inside my body,” explained Peter.
Moments later, he knocked on the door of a nearby cabin and locals immediately arranged for him to get to hospital.
“I thought it was just going to be a quick stitch-up job, but I was transferred to Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospital for surgery. When the accident first happened, I thought about pulling the lead out myself but the doctor later told me that if I had, I would have died because the line was actually wrapped around my aorta! To get at it they had to smash my breastbone and then rebuild it with wire rods.
The doctor was amazed I was alive because of the number of vital organs in that area,” added Peter.
The incident has led the Specialist Angling Alliance to stress the importance of safety on the bank. The SAA’s Chris Burt said: “We have just updated our code of conduct which details how to free tackle entangled in snags. If you are pulling for a break to free snagged line, you should apply leverage sideways away from you, or at least turn away from the direction of pull to safeguard your eyes.”
For more details on the SAA code of conduct, visit www. saauk.org