Tuesday 19 September 2017

Richard Hammond 'pulled himself out of crashed car seconds before it burst into flames'

British television presenter Richard Hammond gesturing towards an x-ray of his injured knee as he sits in a hospital room in St Gallen, after he was involved in a car accident while filming in Switzerland. Photo: AFP/Getty Images
British television presenter Richard Hammond gesturing towards an x-ray of his injured knee as he sits in a hospital room in St Gallen, after he was involved in a car accident while filming in Switzerland. Photo: AFP/Getty Images
The car involved in a crash where Richard Hammond escaped serious injury. Photo: PA

Rebecca Lumley

Richard Hammond pulled himself out of a crashed car just seconds before it burst into flames it has emerged.

The accident is the former Top Gear presenter’s second serious crash while filming.

Mr Hammond (47) was in Switzerland doing a shoot for his Amazon show, The Grand Tour, when the car he was driving veered off the road, flipped over and caught fire.

The Grand Tour have confirmed that Mr Hammond was “conscious and talking, and climbed out of the car himself before the vehicle burst into flames.”

They said: “He was flown by Air Ambulance to hospital in St Gallen to be checked over, revealing a fracture to his knee.

“Nobody else was in the car or involved in the accident, and we'd like to thank the paramedics on site for their swift response. The cause of the crash is unknown and is being investigated.”

Yesterday Mr Hammond posted a video of himself from his hospital bed online, confirming that he was okay  and apologising to his wife and children.

He said: "Hello, yes it's true I binned it again," before adding he will need surgery to fix his broken leg.

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The car involved in a crash where Richard Hammond escaped serious injury. Photo: PA

"I would like to thank all of the medical professionals who got me by air ambulance from the crash to the hospital and who have dealt with me ever since."

In the 'Drive Tribe' video message, titled 'I'm Not Dead', Hammond adds: "And most importantly, sorry to my wife Mindy and to my daughters Issy and Willow."

This video was originally posted to DriveTribe.com where Richard frequently contributes his work, which can be read here.

The crash took place as the TV presenter drove an electric super-car, with his colleague Jeremy Clarkson describing it as "the biggest crash I've ever seen, and the most frightening".

Mr Hammond also made a lucky escape from a serious accident 11 years ago, when he crashed while partaking in a Top Gear stunt. He suffered life threatening brain injuries and was in a coma for two weeks, before eventually making a full recovery.

Mr Hammond, along with Jeremy Clarkson and James May, were presenters of the BBC’s Top Gear but defected to Amazon after Mr Clarkson was fired by the broadcaster for punching a producer.

The Grand Tour made its debut on Amazon Prime in November 2016.

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