A TEENAGER told how he is lucky to be alive after breaking his back in four places during a 20ft plunge.
Wearing a cheeky grin and giving the camera the thumbs up from his hospital bed, it’s hard to believe Daniel Walker shattered his back after slipping and falling 20ft from a railway bridge at the weekend.
But despite breaking four vertebrae in his lower back and fracturing his pelvis, the lucky 15-year-old has been told his injuries should take just eight weeks to heal.
Daniel was walking to a pal’s house in Sherburn to collect some homework on Sunday when he slipped and fell near Durham City.
The Belmont School pupil, who will become head boy in September, was walking along a disused railway line from his Gilesgate home when he slipped on wet grass and fell about 20ft onto a path below.
He said: “I could feel my back and knew something was badly damaged.
“I was shouting and screaming. It was really painful, I couldn’t move.”
Daniel, who lives with his mum Louise, 42, dad Vince, 43, and sister Libby, 10, managed to dial 999 on his phone and call for help.
A jogger stayed with him until medics arrived.
As he was in a remote location, the Great North Air Ambulance was called to take him to Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary.
He was given painkillers and underwent a scan.
He can now stand and walk with difficulty and has also been told he may have to wear a body cast.
“I was very lucky. It could have been a lot worse,” Daniel, who hopes to become a lawyer, said. If I’d landed on my head, I might not have been here.”
Daniel was expected home at the end of this week.