HERO: Oxford University student saves friend from drowning after river accident

A first year Oxford University student saves fellow student from drowning after jumping into a river in the early hours of Thursday morning.

Following a typical student night out in Oxford, four clubbers, who were sober, were making their way home at 2 a.m., when suddenly, one student threw themselves off a bridge into a fast-flowing river. The unnamed student did not resurface once in the river and began to be swept away by the current towards the weir. Luckily, his friends with him at the time realised he was in trouble and needed help quick. One friend ran down stream jumping into the river when he reached a lower bridge. He braved the elements to keep his friends’ head above the water whilst fighting the current for approximately 10 minutes before the emergency services arrived and took them both to hospital.

Matthew, the hero student who jumped in to save his friend, expressed his shock at the whole incident.

“It was all a bit of a shock. We were walking across the bridge and suddenly he decided to jump off a bridge into the flowing water. I went to jump in after him at the bridge he jumped off, but the current had taken him under the bridge, so I ran to the next bridge to jump in there.”

“I grabbed him to stop him going any further down the river, as there was a weir, and the current was getting much stronger. He was a lot bigger than I was, and after about five minutes in the water, I was extremely cold, so I couldn’t really move much more from where I was.”

The Oxford student also expressed how thankfully another student jumped in to give him a hand as he began to also struggle due to being so cold.

“Eventually and thankfully, another guy jumped in with a life ring, and we took him to the other side of the river and pulled him over the side. At that point, the ambulance came.”

Following the incident, the saved student, was taken straight into intensive care, where he remained there for 3 days, before being released from hospital, in the following days. He suffered temporary secondary drowning, and a brief spout of hypothermia, but he has now made a full recovery.

Matthew was taken to hospital too, suffering from hypothermia, as he was in the river for a substantial amount of time on one of the coldest nights this year so far. He was in A&E for several hours but thankfully, he was ok and released a few hours later.

If it were not for his quick-thinking friends, who had noticed he was struggling so quickly in the water, the situation could have ended a lot worse.

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