AN aspiring nurse seriously injured in a fairground accident has finally come out of hospital.

Chloe Austin broke multiple bones and suffered organ damage in an incident involving a fairground ride at the Barrow Island festival Fudstock on August 28.

The 20-year-old, who works as an assistant practitioner at Risedale Care Home in Barrow, was transferred to Royal Preston Hospital in a critical condition following the accident, where she remained until the end of November.

The nursing student suffered two gashes to the head, a broken nose, two broken collar bones, a broken left elbow, three broken ribs, a shattered pelvis, a leg fracture as well as organ damage to her bladder, bowel, spleen, and liver.

After three weeks in a coma and numerous operations, Chloe feels ‘lucky to be alive’ and is determined on ‘smashing’ her recovery.

Looking back on that life-changing night, Chloe said: “I don’t know what happened. I don’t remember going to Fudstock or getting knocked out.

“My earliest memory is the week of the accident but I can’t remember anything from the day.

“I was in a coma for three weeks before I woke up. I’d been through so much physically that it was almost like my brain made me forget what happened to help me recover mentally.

“When I woke up I had no idea what was going on. I was told I had been in a fairground accident but what are the chances of believing that when you first wake up.

“I had to be told a number of times what had happened.

“It’s an indescribable feeling to wake up after three weeks and be told you’ve been in a major accident.”

Chloe then underwent an operation to correct a fracture on her leg after which she became more aware of what had happened.

“It was then my recovery started,” she said.

“I was bedbound for 11 weeks and had to learn to walk again. My physios were amazing.

“It was a case of trying to build the muscles up in my legs again after being bed bound for nearly three months.

“The day I took my first step was just amazing. Being in bed for that long affected my mental health massively.

“The glimmer of hope for me was taking those first steps. It gave me the determination I needed to pull through.

“At some points I thought is this what it’s going to be like forever and couldn’t see an end point.

“I felt like there was no light at the end of the tunnel.”

Chloe ‘smashed’ through her recovery and came out of hospital months before doctor’s predictions.

“I was told several times in hospital that I was lucky to be alive,” she said.

“I was obviously asleep through the critical stages of recovery so my family went through the worst of it.

“My heart aches for what my family had to go through.”

After three months in hospital, Chloe was delivered the long-anticipated news that she could now return home to Barrow.

“I couldn’t believe it, I was so happy,” she said.

“It was a scary thought because I’d relied on medical care for months and wasn’t going to be in the hospital if something were to go wrong.

“Going back to Barrow just felt like I had never been away.”

Doctors have predicted it will take Chloe around two years to fully recover from the accident.

She said: “I need another operation on my organs and need to carry on steps to improve my mobility but I feel determined.

“The worst is over. This is the biggest thing I’ve ever overcome.”

Chloe said the accident has given her a new-found outlook on life.

“Never take anything for granted,” she said.

“What happened to me really changed me as a person.

“I have so much more strength and confidence now.

“Before the accident I would panic and stress over really little things but what happened has made me gain some perspective.

“It’s been a complete whirlwind. What happened has made me realise that nothing is guaranteed in life and to never take anything for granted.”

Chloe has praised the outpouring of community support as well as the ‘incredible’ care given to her at Royal Preston Hospital.

She said: “I was absolutely amazed by the community response once I came back onto social media.

“I didn’t realise how big of an accident it was and how many people knew about it.

“I was shocked by the community response. I think the community of Barrow and Cumbria really came together.

“And the care at Royal Preston Hospital was just unbelievable.

“I made some friends for life at the staff in Preston. I couldn’t have asked for better support than everyone at the major trauma and ICU in Preston.”

Chloe is hoping to return to work next year and resume her adult nursing degree in September.

A joint investigation into the fairground accident between HSE and Cumbria police is ongoing.