A grandmother has seriously injured herself by tripping on a road cover – the day after her husband cracked his ribs in the same spot.
John and Mary Tolhurst from Third Avenue in Lancing said they both tripped after catching their toes on the edge of a BT service chamber cover outside Nationwide in North Road.
Mrs Tolhurst, 76, broke her elbow and split her forehead open after the fall.
She said her first reaction after falling was to tell West Sussex County Council of the ‘danger’ so it could be fixed.
She added: “If a pregnant woman had fallen, she could have lost her baby.”
Mr Tolhurst, 81, injured himself after his fall on Friday – but only discovered the extent of his injuries on Tuesday when he saw his doctor.
I always say I’m a tough old bird but I don’t feel it at the momentMary Tolhurst
After his fall, the retired teacher said he was helped by two men and a hairdresser from The Hair & Beauty Boutique, who offered to call an ambulance.
The next day, his wife visited the boutique to thank the woman for her help – but tripped on the same road cover and knocked herself out.
When she came to, Mrs Tolhurst said she was covered in blood from a gash above her eyebrow, and when paramedics tried to move her, pain shot through her arm and she ‘went through the roof’.
She was taken to Worthing Hospital, where her forehead was stitched up and X-rays and scans confirmed she had broken her elbow.
The retired Debenhams worker said she ‘cannot speak highly enough’ of the paramedics and hospital staff, and thanked them for looking after her.
She said the incident left her ‘very upset’ and she felt like she had been ‘run over by a tank’.
She fought back the tears when she said she would now not be able to attend her granddaughter Elizabeth Triumbari’s graduation in Rome after she qualified to be a doctor.
She said: “It is not like me at all; I am a very active person. We are both robust, I always say I’m a tough old bird but I don’t feel it at the moment.”
A West Sussex County Council spokesman said the cover on North Road had been cordoned off following the falls.
They added: “One of our highway stewards is due to undertake a site visit to review this location.”
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