Doncaster holiday couple stranded after being seriously injured abroad plead for £30,000 to get home

Sarah Liddle and Rhys Sykes are stranded in Vietnam after suffering serious injuries in a motorbike crash.
Sarah Liddle and Rhys Sykes are stranded in Vietnam after suffering serious injuries in a motorbike crash.

A desperate Doncaster couple stranded 6,000 miles from home after a horrific holiday road accident are pleading for help after being told it will cost £30,000 to get back to the UK.

British backpackers Rhys Sykes and Sarah Liddle are marooned in Vietnam following a motorbike smash in the country which left Sarah with a badly broken leg and unable to fly back home.

Now the young couple are pleading for help to fly back to the United Kingdom for urgent medical treatment - but have been told that a special evacuation flight will cost them £30,000.

Rhys, said: "We have been told that a special evacuation flight would cost upwards of £30,000 which obviously we do not have the money for.

"We just don't know what to do. We just want to get Sarah home so she can receive proper medical treatment."

Tragedy struck for the couple, both former Hungerhill School pupils, on Valentine's Day when the hired motorbike they were travelling on through the Far East country was smashed into by another motorcycle.

Rhys said: "We were travelling on a moped down a country road when we saw a coach coming the other way.

"We moved over to give room as the road was narrow but all of a sudden another moped came speeding out from behind the coach and hit us head on at speed."

Sarah, 23, of Dunsville and Rhys, 24, of Hatfield, were hurled from the bike and onto the side of the road, with both suffering serious injuries.

Sarah suffered three separate breaks to her left leg and was left with blood pouring from an open wound while Rhys suffered a broken foot, broken fingers and seriously grazed arms.

He added: "I managed to flag a couple of people down on the roadside, a Vietnamese man in a car who spoke some English and some fellow travellers also on motorbikes.

"After about an hour an ambulance turned up which was basically a van with a stretcher in the back. They took us to hospital where Sarah needed an immediate operation to secure the bones and close the open wound up to prevent infection.

"After the operation we where basically on our own in the hospital. She was given a few painkillers and antibiotics everything else like basic care and needs was left up to us.

"We had to change the bed sheets and had to try and find to get food and water. Washing and going to the toilet was all left up to us to handle, even with our injuries."

The couple were part way through a backpacking trip around Asia and Australasia, having setting off from the UK shortly before Christmas and having already visited Thailand and Laos before crossing the border into Vietnam where tragedy struck. The couple were due to celebrate their first anniversary on February 15 - the day after the accident.

The couple are currently locked in a battle of red tape and legal minefields with their travel insurers over the validity of their policy as well as airlines, medical institutions, and the British and Vietnamese authorities

He said: "Our biggest complaint is with Vietnamese services for how they have dealt with it afterwards, basically doing nothing and leaving us to pick up the pieces. We also feel very let down by our embassy and consulate both here in Vietnam and at home in London, offering little to no help with advice either emotionally, medically or financially."

After spending eight days in hospital, the pair were declared fit to fly by medics - but on arriving at the airport in Ho Chi Minh, they were told they would not be able to board - and are now currently based in a hotel in the city while they consider their next move.

He said: "We have had a quote for an evacuation flight that would cost upwards of £30,000. If people could help with any legal advice about the insurance or any advice on how to raise some money to get myself any Sarah home so she can receive proper medical treatment it would be greatly appreciated."

"We have been told she is not clear to fly alone due to the severity of her injury. She apparently requires a stretcher and doctor or nurse on board to administer medication. Then I need to get myself home too."

The couple are still intending to return to Asia to complete their trip at some stage, with Cambodia, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand due to be the next destinations on their three month break.

A crowdfunding site to help the couple raise the cash has already raised more than £1,000. To donate, visit Get Sarah Home Just Giving Page