Expelled boy impaled on fence

Last updated 13:02 17/04/2008
MARK DWYER/Taranaki Daily News
KEEP OUT: Fraser High School principal Martin Elliott surveys the scene after an ex-student was impaled trying to climb the security fence. Todd Sherburd prepares to fix the fence, which was built to keep out unwanted visitors.

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A 15-year-old boy trying to leave Hamilton's Fraser High School yesterday was impaled on a metal spike of a security fence designed to keep people out.

The youth, a former student who had been expelled, was impaled under the arm when he slipped while climbing the fence. He was freed by firefighters and taken to hospital by ambulance.

St John's Ambulance Northern Communications Centre confirmed a call was received at 1.40pm and that the patient was in a moderate condition.

He was "well impaled" on the fence and medics needed firefighters' help get him off the fence. The teenager was taken to Waikato Hospital.

Waikato District Health Board spokeswoman Mary Anne Gill this morning said the youth was in a comfortable condition in a paediatric ward.

Fraser High principal Martin Elliott said he was called to the security fence, put up only three weeks ago, about 2pm.

"It was an ex-student who had been excluded. He had been back on school grounds with another non-student, he must have come in another way, and had climbed the fence to get out and slipped.

"The metal spike appeared to have entered under his arm and was lodged in his armpit. While the spike had gone under the skin, it seemed to have missed his rib cage. He was very very lucky. We supported him so he stayed on the top of the fence. An ambulance arrived to sedate and calm him, then the fire brigade arrived with two engines."

The fire service cut the boy free and he was taken to hospital, with the metal spike still lodged in his arm.

Mr Elliott said the boy was still conscious and talking.

The incident highlighted exactly why the fence was put up in the first place. "This is the main reason we built the fence, to stop people who aren't ours coming into our school grounds. It's only been up three weeks, but this is a timely warning to people why it is there.

"If you want to visit a school, use the front gate and report to the office. If you are going to do this, you will potentially do damage to yourself."

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- Waikato Times

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