FIFO worker narrowly escapes paralysing in pool accident

A Karratha fly-in, fly-out worker has broken his neck diving into a hotel swimming pool following a few end-of-rotation beers last week.

Queenslander Paul Ure, narrowly avoided spinal failure after his “split-second, idiotic” decision to dive into the pool at a Karratha pub before checking the water depth, the West reported.

Ure smashed open his skull when he hit the bottom of the pool, breaking a small part of his neck.

"A guy a little bit taller than me strips off and jumps in the pool and I take my shirt off and pretty much follow him," Ure said.

"I didn't stop to wait until the water cleared to see how deep the water was.

"It was quite horrendous, I remember every bit of it. My head hitting the concrete and dragging, I tried to lift myself up out of the water and a flap of skin was hanging off.

"I'm looking at my friends and I'm thinking 'this must be terrible' and they all rushed to my aid and pretty much kept me in the water up against the wall, trying not to move."

The forty year old father of four feared he would never see his wife and children again.

Ure was taken to Karratha's Nickol Bay Hospital and then transferred to the Royal Perth Hospital by the Royal Flying Doctor Service on Wednesday last week.

Royal Perth Hospital State director of trauma Dr Sudhakar Rao said Ure narrowly avoided becoming a paraplegic.

"I think he's used up all his luck in the world," Dr Rao said.

"His more serious injury is that he cracked his spine, the bones in his neck. If he hadn't had the right treatment at the right time he could have become paralysed."

Ure is today expected to check out of RPH, luckily walking but donned in a neck brace and a Frankensteinesque seam of stitches running across his head, visible signs of his near miss.

Accounting for his accident, Ure provided a warning to others in the lead up to Christmas: "I'm all for people having a good time, it's just that when you're in that group mentality . . . it takes a couple of seconds just to look at it and think, 'wait this is dangerous'," he said.

"Just those couple of seconds of checking can save your life. Think before you leap – don't just jump in."

Image: The West

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