A British teen is lucky to be alive after he was speared in the chest — by his own fishing float, also known as a bobber.

Tom Mitchenall, 17, had hooked a large carp and was jostling with the heavy fish when the line snapped sending the slender plastic float "twanging" back at him like an arrow. Incredibly, the 8- inch plastic dart pierced Mitchenall's chest and embedded itself in his lung which collapsed.

The riverbank "missile" missed his main artery by just an inch. Had it been cut he would have bled to death.

But Mitchenall was rushed to hospital where surgeons removed the float from his chest and drained the fluid on his lung.

"It was scary as hell. I felt like I'd been shot with a crossbow. At one point I thought I was going to die,” Mitchnall said. "Doctors said if the float had hit me an inch to the right it would have pierced an artery and I'd have had it."

Mitchenall was just 15 minutes into a pole fishing competition at Whitehall Angling Club in Rushwick, Worcs, when he struck into a large common carp.

He played the fish for a few moments before it 'broke' him — snapping the elastic connecting the float to the line.

The recoiling float shot 18ft out of the water straight back at Mitchenall and pierced his football shirt before embedding itself in his right lung.

Surgeons spent an hour removing the float before they drained the fluid.

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