In a heartwarming display of bravery and quick thinking, Paul Johnston, a dedicated Sweeper Driver at Go Plant, has been honoured with the Personal Impact Medal for his exceptional actions during a recent road accident in Ryton.
As Paul navigated the roads on his journey to complete a routine morning sweep, he noticed that the driver in front of him appeared to be distracted. Preoccupied with her phone not fully focusing on the road and traffic ahead. More worryingly, the driver was approaching a crucial junction, which involved crossing two lanes of oncoming traffic to turn right.
At the junction, disaster unfortunately struck as the distracted driver pulled out directly into the path of oncoming traffic, resulting in a collision that sent her vehicle spinning into another car carrying a family on the school run.
In a split-second decision that undoubtedly saved lives, Paul Johnston manoeuvred his vehicle between the collision and oncoming traffic, acting as a shield and preventing further harm. With remarkable composure, he then sprang into action, assessing the condition of the occupants involved in the collision, finding that the car that caused the incident also held two young children.
Sensing the urgency of the situation, Paul assisted the occupants to safety and awaited help from the emergency services.
Fortunately, an off-duty police officer and a nurse arrived quickly on the scene, offering crucial support to those involved. It was later revealed that the distracted driver had been attempting to contact her child minder and took her attention off the road for a brief moment, leading to the distressing accident.
For his outstanding courage and calm demeanour in the face of a potentially tragic situation, Paul has been awarded the Personal Impact Medal in association with Highways Heroes. This accolade celebrates individuals who have demonstrated extraordinary personal initiative and bravery, making a significant impact in challenging circumstances.
Cathy Potts, HR Director at Go Plant, who also attended the event expressed her immense pride that Paul had been nominated for the award stating she felt “extremely privileged and humbled to be able to attend the event, where striving to keep the workplace safe is at the heart of the organisation that promotes the awards”.
Go Plant wholeheartedly commends Paul Johnston for his exemplary conduct and unwavering commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of others on the road.
Fortunately, there were no serious injuries this time, however this remarkable incident serves as a poignant reminder of the importance of vigilance and focus while driving.