Survivor knows that risks can kill, maim

Crash survivor Matthew Woodberry yesterday.CRASH survivor Matthew Woodberry is lucky to be alive to tell his story.
HangZhou Night Net

He knows all too well the dangers, and great consequences, of risky behaviour behind the wheel.

The 31-year-old from Devonport has an acquired brain injury, caused by a horrific accident on Boxing Day in 1999.

At the time of the accident, which saw him crash into a power pole after driving at 190kmh along Lillico Road, Mr Woodberry was 19 and had only three weeks left to finish his boilermaker/welder apprenticeship.

A highly talented cyclist, he was considered one of the best in Tasmania at the time and touted as a potential Olympian before the crash put paid to any chances he may have had.

While his mates were receiving their graduation certificate or training hard for cycling, Mr Woodberry was unconscious in hospital and left fighting for his life.

He endured more than 60 operations during his recovery.

Speaking at yesterday’s Rotary Youth Driver Awareness (RYDA) program at Camp Clayton, Mr Woodberry urged young drivers to exercise caution on the roads when they get their licence.

“Don’t do it, or you could end up like me,” he warned participants in regard to risky behaviour on the roads.

The students were shown gory images illustrating the shocking extent of Mr Woodberry’s injuries, with the crash causing part of his brain and skull to come to rest on the side of the road where the crash happened.

Mr Woodberry’s story was a strong, graphic and effective message to send to the road users of tomorrow.

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.

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