Patient Story -

Teenage horsefall survivor ‘can’t thank CareFlight enough’

Ask 18-year-old Taylah McGee whether she’ll get back in the saddle and she’ll tell you the number of days, hours and minutes until her doctors say she can ride again. 

For now she is on the long road to recovery, taking time out from TAFE studies to recover from a serious horse-riding accident that left her in a spinal brace, unable to walk without the aid of crutches. 

On November 6, the Woodford local was riding Toby, a Buckskin Stockhorse in Beerburrum State Forest, when a logging truck sped past kicking up a thick cloud of dust.

Toby who was normally good with traffic shied and threw Taylah onto the hard surface below.

“I don’t remember hitting the ground. The first thing I remember was seeing things from a blurry point of view and fading in and out”

Drifting in and out of consciousness, Taylah recalls two motorists discovering her and calling for an ambulance.

“The couple who found me were really lovely. They stayed with me until help arrived,” she said. Taylah was badly concussed.

She suffered fractures to two vertebrae in her lower back and needed to get to hospital fast.

With injuries too serious for the bumpy drive out, RACQ CareFlight Rescue’s Sunshine Coast-based helicopter was urgently tasked to the scene of the accident.

While CareFlight’s medical team stabilised Taylah, Air Crewman Dan King reassured the first-time flyer that everything was going to be ok.

“I was extremely distressed when they arrived as I've never been in a plane let alone a helicopter but their soothing words and reassurance made me feel safe,” she said.

“The crew were amazing, I was super scared but Dan held my hand for the whole flight. They all were caring and kind and very reassuring.”

Taylah was taken to the Royal Brisbane Hospital where she spent three nights receiving treatment for her injuries. “I’m certain if it wasn't for CareFlight I would be in a much worse condition now - I cannot thank them enough.”