Woman saved man with chainsaw injuries

A SUFFOLK woman has received a top award after she helped to save the life of a man who had been attacked by a gang wielding a chainsaw.

Richard Smith

A SUFFOLK woman has received a top award after she helped to save the life of a man who had been attacked by a gang wielding a chainsaw.

Vicki Bingham was driving along a quiet country lane when she suddenly saw a van engulfed in a fireball.

The driver was lying on the ground with his legs almost cut through by a chainsaw and Mrs Bingham dashed to his rescue and managed to stem the blood pouring from his legs.

Mrs Bingham, of Sudbourne, near Woodbridge, has now received a commendation from Sara Thornton, Chief Constable of Thames Valley Police.

The rescue, which took place in a scene more akin to a horror movie, occurred in West Oxfordshire and Andy Murray, a police superintendent who investigated the attack, said the driver could have died if Mrs Bingham had not stopped to help him.

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He said: “She chose to help a complete stranger in the middle of nowhere in a situation which could have been a danger to herself.”

But a modest Mrs Bingham said yesterdayit was a natural instinct to help someone in distress and there was no question of not going to his aid.

The drama occurred when Mrs Bingham, who works for Cherry Tarts caterers in Badingham, was driving to visit her father, Peter Pennant-Rea, in Burford.

Mrs Bingham, 65, said: “I saw in the distance a huge conflagration. A van was on fire and then I saw a man crawling along the road.

“As I got close I could see his legs were almost cut through, blood was pouring out and he was screaming in agony.

“It was a horrendous sight - the kind of thing you would see in a horror movie. He was waving his mobile phone in the air, he had called 999 and I started talking to the emergency services.”

“I have first aid experience and I got a rug out of the car and wrapped it round his legs to stem the flow of blood.”

She tried to calm the man and stayed with him about 15 minutes until police officers arrived before resuming her journey.

The 40-year-old driver told police two men had demanded money and then attacked him with a chainsaw and burned his van when he refused to give them anything. The two attackers have not been caught.

Thames Valley Police said Mrs Bingham had displayed the highest order of good citizenship.

A spokesman for the force said: “Victoria Bingham is commended for immense courage when coming to the aid of a seriously injured victim of crime near Shilton, West Oxfordshire, in March 2006.

“She managed to reassure and calm the severely traumatised victim and directed emergency services to the scene.”

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