AN Irish woman has told how she is “lucky to be alive” after sustaining horrific injuries in an electric scooter accident in the United States three years ago.
Belfast native Karmen Curley, 21, was diagnosed with a bleed on the brain after a fall from a scooter while on holidays in California in May 2019.
She also suffered a broken collarbone, nose and eye orbital bone and was left clocking up €13,000 a day in medical bills as she recovered in intensive care in UCLA Hospital, in Los Angeles.
Karmen, who was 18 at the time, spent nearly three weeks in intensive care after hitting a pothole and being thrown over the front of the e-scooter
Speaking to the Belfast Telegraph about the horror accident, Karmen told how she’s still undergoing tests as a result of the injuries she incurred after being thrown over the front of an e-scooter.
She said: “I was in hospital for camera tests last year and I’m still on medication because of the accident.
“I get migraines a lot. The experts aren’t sure what’s wrong with me. They believe it may be post traumatic epilepsy linked to the accident.
“My sister told me that as soon as I came round after the accident I started having seizures. I was seizuring (sic) in the ambulance on the way to the hospital, whatever way I hit my head.
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“The medics told me I was lucky to be alive. They said a lot of people with my type of bleed on the brain don’t survive so I feel very lucky. Even if I do have epilepsy, I’m glad that’s all I have.”
Karmen said she doesn’t want to see e-scooters legalised here after learning first-hand of the dangers associated with riding them – and added: “At the very least they should get helmets.”
The 21-year-old shop worker said she doesn’t “remember much about” the day of the accident.
She explained: “Every time I woke up in hospital I couldn’t remember where I was.”
“The accident definitely affected my memory it’s still not the best. But I can’t complain. I’m very lucky to be here.”
Her sister Sian launched a fundraising campaign to help pay for the mounting medical bills as Karmen was without health insurance.
Speaking to Irish Sun at the time, Sian explained how the family were still paying off their mum Karen’s funeral costs.
She said: “We are still paying off the funeral costs of our Mum and with these mounting costs we don’t know how we’re going to cope.”
Karen, 47, suffered an aneurysm and died the year before the accident, while the sister’s also tragically lost their brother Saul in a car accident in 2014.
To help the Curley sisters, you can donate here.