Jonathan Loates is lucky to be alive after a trailer hitch ball that fell off another vehicle smashed through the windshield of his BMW on a U.K. road.
Loates was cruising along a Nottinghamshire highway at 40 mph when the 20-pound hunk of metal struck the glass directly in front of him and glanced off his forehead, leaving a massive, bloody gash. The 30-year-old somehow managed to pull over and get out of the car, but collapsed on the side of the road.
"I don't know if it knocked me out or I blacked out but the next thing I remember was getting out with my head pouring with blood,” Loates told South West News Service (SWNS), a British news agency.
A passing motorist and an off-duty paramedic stopped to help and applied pressure on the wound until an ambulance arrived to take him to the hospital where he received over 100 stitches during a three-hour procedure.
Loates recalls seeing an object on the road ahead of him just before the hitch hit his car, and believes he would’ve been decapitated if he hadn’t ducked as it flew toward him.
Police are asking the public for information on the Jan 9. incident and urging drivers to secure their hitches, especially during cold weather when the metal can contract and they’re more likely to come loose.
Loates’ accident is eerily similar to one that was recently recorded on a dashcam in Canada when a hitch or hammer bounced into the windshield of a Tesla Model 3, but didn’t penetrate the glass.