A CRAVEN pensioner had a lucky escape after being felled by a flying log in a wood-cutting accident that features in an episode of Helicopter ER - the reality TV series featuring the work of the Yorkshire Air Ambulance.

Forester and landscape gardener Trevor Dawson was cutting sycamore using a high-pressure log splitter machine when he was hit in the chest by a 20kg lump of wood.

The force of the impact threw the 75-year-old backwards causing him severe internal and external bruising.

Fortunately, the father-of-three had his mobile phone and could call a farmer friend who found him in agony on the ground and rang the emergency services. Yorkshire Air Ambulance was dispatched to the remote location near Skipton and flew Trevor to the nearest major trauma centre in Preston.

“It happened so suddenly – one moment everything was great and then the machine spat out this log and the next thing I know I’m on the floor. I really thought it was the end of me because the pain in my chest was terrible,” said Trevor, who comes from West Marton, near Skipton.

It’s not the first time that Trevor has reason to be grateful to the rapid response charity – his wife Elaine was also airlifted a few years ago following a bad horse-riding accident close to where they live.

He added: “I’ve had a few accidents before but nothing as horrendous as this, and it was such a relief to see the air ambulance land.

“There was no way a road ambulance could have got to me. Yorkshire Air Ambulance were just fantastic.”

It took Trevor more than a month to recover from his injuries. His accident features in tonight's (Tuesday) episode of Helicopter ER, the award-winning Really TV series which follows the life-saving work of Yorkshire Air Ambulance.

This week’s programme also features the story of a boy who broke his leg after falling from hay bales, a man seriously injured in a high-speed crash and a farming accident involving a cattle feeder.

Serving a population of approximately five million people across Yorkshire’s four million acres, YAA operates two air ambulances from airbases at The Nostell Priory Estate near Wakefield and RAF Topcliffe near Thirsk, plus two Rapid Response Vehicles.

The rapid response air emergency service needs to raise £19,000 every day to keep its two helicopters flying. To find out more go to www.yorkshireairambulance.org.uk