A young woman who suffered serious head injuries after being knocked down by a car is urging people to be careful on the road.
Steph Blake was on a pedestrian crossing on the A35 Totton Bypass on June 22 when a car, which had not stopped before the traffic lights turned red, collided with her.
The 22-year-old was taken to Southampton General Hospital before undergoing a six-hour operation to remove part of her skull to reduce brain swelling.
She was left in a coma for 19 days and has since had two further operations.
Steph, from Totton, said: ‘I remember the cars had stopped and the lane being empty, then I remember a car at my left hip.
‘I can also remember laying on the ground and think I have memory of people coming to help.
‘After that there is just nothing. The next thing I recall is waking up in hospital and seeing my dad.’
Steph’s injuries meant she was unable to take up a job offer to become a cabin crew member of EasyJet.
After leaving hospital Steph asked injury lawyers Irwin Mitchell to help her get the specialist rehabilitation she requires, and is helping them to mark Brake’s annual Road Safety Week.
Claire Howard, from Irwin Mitchell, said: ‘This case is yet another example of the huge effect that road traffic collisions can have on those involved, with Steph suffering devastating, life-threatening injuries which have impacted greatly on her life.
‘While Steph has undoubtedly made great progress considering everything she has been through, she still continues to experience significant issues related to the injuries. Not only that, but she has also faced the heartbreak of her life changing causing her to miss out on a dream job opportunity.
‘Road Safety Week is an important time to reflect on what we can all do to ensure road users and pedestrians are always safe from harm. We would urge everyone across our region to use the campaign as an opportunity to consider how they could take extra care and make safety their primary concern.’
Although Steph left hospital in August 20218, she still faces issues with fatigue, memory loss, concentration and some behavioural problems.
She said: ‘The past year or so has been the most difficult of my life and the incident has affected me in so many ways. I was devastated that I couldn’t take up my cabin crew job and it is difficult not to think about how things could have been different.
‘However, I have to remember that I’m lucky to be alive. I’m determined to look to the future and move forward with my life. Nothing will change what has happened, but I just want to encourage people to always be careful on the road. Failing to do so can have massive consequences.’
Road Safety Week runs from November 18-24 and is organised by Brake. For more information visit www.roadsafetyweek.org.uk/