‘I thought I was paralysed’: International student, 19, suffers a freak skydiving accident and breaks her SPINE after falling 4000m
- Beatriz Martinez-Martin broke her L3 vertebrae after falling from a skydive in NZ
- A freak gust of wind threw her and her instructor into the ground, injuring both
- The injury touched her spinal cord, doctors were shocked she wasn’t paralysed
- The 19-year-old had surgery to put a cadaver bone and screws on her spine
- Since surgery she has rarely been in pain, and stood for the first time on Friday
An international student has fractured her spine after a freak skydiving accident.
University of San Diego student Beatriz Martinez-Martin broke her L3 vertebrae after falling 4,000 metres from a skydive in Auckland, New Zealand.
The 19-year-old was on a tandem jump with an instructor when a freak gust of wind caught their parachute as they were coming in to land, throwing the duo into the ground.
‘My tandem was screaming. I could tell she was in a lot of pain,’ Ms Martinez-Martin told Stuff.
‘I saw people running towards us and I was just like: ”Help me, help me”.’
Ms Martinez-Martin had surgery on Thursday where a cage-like device with cadaver bone and screws was put on her spine, leaving her able to stand up for the first time since the accident on Friday
Ms Martinez-Martin was rushed to hospital, where doctors examined her injuries and were shocked that she wasn’t paralysed.
‘I had burst my L3. They said it touched my spinal cord so that’s why they were all really surprised I wasn’t paralysed,’ she said.
Ms Martinez-Martin had surgery on Thursday where a cage-like device with cadaver bone and screws was put on her spine.
Since her surgery she has rarely been in pain, and stood up for the first time after the incident on Friday.
A GoFundMe page was set up for Ms Martinez-Martin, requesting $15,000 to help pay for her medical expenses and flights back home to the United States.
The page has raised more than $7,000 for her recovery fund.
Ms Martinez-Martin’s instructor was also hospitalised in the fall, but was discharged with minor injuries.
After her accident, Ms Martinez-Martin will have to stay in New Zealand for a few more weeks until she is able to fly home, and that’s fine by her.
‘This is so great. I want to move here. Everyone’s been really nice,’ she said.
Beatriz Martinez-Martin pictured before her freak skydiving accident in New Zealand