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Heroic constable rescues woman in bridge drama

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A UTTOXETER police officer saved the life of an unconscious woman who was on the brink of falling off a bridge on to the A50.

Police were alerted to a woman teetering near the edge of the Dove Way bridge at 9.40pm on Sunday.

Constable Penny Doyle-Johnson was first on the scene.

She was forced to take action when the woman fell unconscious and slumped over the bridge on to a foot-wide ledge beyond the barrier.

With the help of a passing motorist, PC Doyle-Johnson was able to pull the woman to safety.

She said: “When I got there I couldn’t see her from the road so I was walking along and saw a head pop up.

“I went to engage with her but she wasn’t responding and had fallen unconscious.

“Then she slumped right over the bridge, hanging above the A50.

“She was on a foot-wide ledge over the barrier.

“I leaned over the bridge and grabbed the only part of her I could, which was a sling on her arm.

“Although she had a broken arm, I decided grabbing her by that limb would be better than allowing her to fall on to the A50.”

PC Doyle-Johnson clung to the woman while she waited for colleagues to assist her.

But it was a passing motorist who stopped to help the heroic officer.

PC Doyle-Johnson said: “My colleagues were on the way and, in the meantime, a female motorist was passing by.

“I somehow managed to flag her down and she came and helped me.

“She reached through the bridge and grabbed some of the woman’s trousers.

“We lifted her back on to the bridge while she was still unconscious.”

It was the second time in a week police had been called to deal with a suspected suicide attempt on the Dove Way Bridge.

On July 1, traffic on the carriageway was stopped as police talked a ‘woman in distress’ down from the bridge.

PC Doyle-Johnson refuted suggestions of her heroism.

She said: “It’s like everyone says – you do what needs to be done at the time.

“There were no emotional feelings involved. I just did what anyone else would’ve done.

“But the feeling of knowing you’ve saved someone from their own actions is satisfying.”

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