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Handy app helped mum find her teen son after he crashed his bike in the middle of the forest


A teenager who suffered pain so excruciating it felt like a “bonfire in his bones” after smashing his collarbone when his bike crashed into a tree told how he was rescued from the middle of a forest thanks to a special mobile app. Tom Allen, 15, was out cycling with his friend in Friston Forest, East Sussex – part of the South Downs National Park- on July 28, when a jump ended in disaster, after he misjudged the distance, hurtled into the air and collided with a tree. Realising his injury was serious, he called an ambulance but, when he could not provide a specific location, paramedics instructed him to download the what3words app on his phone, providing a three word address for his location, which helped them to find him within 45 minutes. Tom, of Seaford, East Sussex, whose frantic mum Lorna, 52, a charity worker, also found him using the app, recalled: “I have a full suspension mountain bike and it’s a jump I’ve done so many times before – a really easy one. “This time, I thought I would go bigger and higher, but I went too high and too far and did not have time to correct myself. It was so high I went over my friend who was in front of me. “I realised mid-air that I was about to hit this tree and that I’d have to brace myself.”

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