Wilmot holds the helmet she was wearing when the truck hit her in late July. (Brieanna Charlebois/Morning Star)

B.C. woman praises helmet after truck runs over her head

“Wearing a helmet saved my life.”

Vernon, B.C. — Eleanor Wilmot, 66, is sure she’d be dead if she wasn’t wearing a biking helmet when she was struck by an oncoming truck.

It was a smouldering Friday afternoon in late July when she — expecting company — decided to make a grocery run on her bike in Vernon. She strapped on her helmet like she usually did and made her way to the store; routine.

Afterwards, groceries and fresh flowers resting in her bike basket, she began her ride home. She had just made her way into the intersection between 43rd Avenue and 27th Street when she was hit.

“I always go through the sidestreets but this intersection was hard to avoid. The truck was turning at the same time and suddenly I was under it,” Wilmot said. “The truck was so high that I’m sure he didn’t even see me.”

Related: Cyclist struck in morning crash

Related: B.C. cyclist’s bike dragged several blocks after hit and run

Related: Bicycle helmets are the law

The next thing she remembers is being stuck, pinned beneath the truck with passersby telling her to try to hold still and wait for the paramedics.

“I just remember the heat,” she said. “The waiting was the worst because it was a hot day and there was lots of summer traffic and I just remember wearing shorts and a sleeveless top, laying spread eagle on the pavement. It felt like I was being barbequed on the pavement so it seemed like forever before the paramedics arrived.”

Wilmot’s husband Glen Nikasari was at Canadian Tire when he got the call telling him his wife was in the hospital.

“I talked to the paramedics and they said that when they showed up, they thought she was dead from the way she was positioned under the truck,” he said. “And when I saw the helmet and almost got sick thinking of what her head was going to look like.”

According to paramedics, the truck’s tire rolled right over her head. Wilmot is sure that this helmet saved her life.

Her injuries included: three to five cracked ribs, a small tear in her lungs, a fractured pelvis and a broken collarbone. She had three blood transfusions.

“I also had surgery and have a titanium plate in me now.”

She also had swollen and bruised head, shoulders and back and road rash on her hands and knees.

Having recently returned home, you’d never know she had a near-death experience. She still has bruising around her head and down her back but she is able to walk well and the swelling around her face has gone down.

She is grateful to the paramedics who saved her life — and to her friends who convinced her to buy a helmet.

“I never used to wear a helmet myself but if it had gone over my head without it, I don’t see how I would have lived,” she said. “It looks like it wouldn’t do much but it definitely did the job. Wearing a helmet saved my life.”

She hopes her story reaches young kids who are headed back to school in the upcoming weeks and urges them to remember to wear a helmet.

Related: OPINION: On helmets and helicopter parenting

Related: Vernon Ride Don’t Hide event raises $59,000

Related: Vernon BrainTrust barbecue buys helmets

To report a typo, email:
newstips@vernonmorningstar.com
.



Follow me on Twitter @BrieChar
Email me brieanna.charlebois@vernonmorningstar.com
Like us on

 

The tire reportedly rolled over her head. (Brieanna Charlebois/Morning Star)

Pictured: the bike that Wilmot was riding — it is no longer usable. (Brieanna Charlebois/Morning Star)

Eleanor Wilmot, 66, was biking when she was struck by a truck. (Brieanna Charlebois/Morning Star)

Just Posted

Tempering the Okanagan cannabis legalization ‘gold rush’

Retail selling of marijuana offers potential business opportunities and pitfalls

Revelstoke Forestry Museum’s River Side Forest Walk ready for exploring

The trail is almost done but the interpretive signs aren’t up yet

Phone scam uses false RCMP ID on call display

North Okanagan RCMP say there are applications that allow people to change, hide call display info

Sister of plane crash victim that went missing near Revelstoke starting support network

Tammy Neron wants to help families who are searching for missing people

Meet the new reporter at Revestoke Review

Liam Harrap comes to us from Edson, Alta.

VIDEO: Rare close encounter with whale pod spotted off B.C. waters

Pod of southern resident orca whales breach within arms length of whale watchers

Rattie scores 3 as Oilers blank Canucks 6-0

Vancouver slips to 1-5 in exhibition play

Veterans Affairs ordered to take second look before supporting vets’ relatives

Liberal government ordered officials to adopt a more critical eye

Dead B.C. motorcyclist was member of group that raced down mountain road

Some group members record their rides on Strathcona Parkway and post times to page

Indigenous athletes in spotlight at BC Sports Hall of Fame

New gallery to feature Carey Price, Kaila Mussel and Richard Peter

Okanagan College student population climbs

Enrolment up nearly 14 per cent

B.C. couple who went missing on flight from Edmonton named by family

Family released a statement Wednesday saying they’re still intent on finding the two-seater plane

Coldstream supports Okanagan College Campus residence project

Project would see a 100-bed residence on the Vernon campus in Coldstream

VIDEO: A close look at what you were breathing during the B.C. wildfire season

Electron microscope images show soot and tar particles generated by worst B.C. fire season

Most Read