A Doncaster man avoided having his leg amputated after a horror road smash - because of the shoes he was wearing.
Malcolm Copeland suffered massive leg injuries after a hit and run accident in Scotland - and has put his survival down to the safety boots he was wearing at the time of the horror smash.
He said: “I am so thankful that I was wearing my safety boots - they are the only reason I still have my foot."
Malcolm, orginally from Thorne, suffered severe fractures to his lower left leg and is still undergoing treatment after the accident earlier this year but admits that his choice of footwear helped to save him from having his leg amputated, a view shared by one of the doctors who treated him.
Surgeon Amanda Hawkins, an orthopaedic specialist said: “Had it not been for the strength of the footwear, his foot would have been pulled off in the accident. It is quite remarkable.”
The drama unfolded as Malcom and fiancee Joanne Crowther drove from a family party in Scotland to their new home in Newcastle.
As the newly engaged couple chatted about the evening spent at a family party and their hopes for the future including Malcolm starting a new job, they were unaware that the petrol level in their car was low, forcing the vehicle to come to a standstill at a roundabout in Dumfries.
Malcolm went to find fuel but forgot the petrol container and Joanne called him back to retrieve it.
However, as he returned, he was in collision with a passing car, the driver of which did not stop.
His foot was met with the full force of both the front and back wheels and then he was tossed and dragged up hill.
A horrified Joanne, who witnessed the sickening scene said: “I saw what I thought was a traffic cone being thrown into the air.
"When it landed on the road I realised it was Malcolm.
"I watched in shock as he was then being dragged by the left foot up the hill. I ran to him, put him in the recovery position and fended off the gathering crowd. Soon the ambulance arrived and Malcolm was taken to Dumfries and Galloway hospital."
Malcolm suffered severe fractures to his lower left leg, yet his foot was only slightly bruised.
His Dickies Fife Dealer Safety boot, though mangled after the accident, had maintained integrity with its steel toe cap and steel midsole helping keep his foot safe.
Malcolm has since had four operations and remains in traction while he waits to undergo many more. He has dramatic scarring to both upper and lower parts of the limb.
He said: “I wear Dickies boots every day. They are solid and strong and as my accident showed, they protected me against all odds."
The pair are getting married soon in Scotland and Joanne said: “He will look dashing in a kilt, a sporran - and a new pair of Dickies safety boots.”
In the meantime, the mangled safety boot will take pride of place in their living room.
The story came to light when suppliers of the boot, Thurlow Nunn Standen Ltd in Cambridge, ran a Facebook competition to win a pair of Dickies Fife dealer safety boots and Malcolm posted details of his injuries on their Facebook page.