Speed Reads


Man 'lucky' to survive a chainsaw slicing through his neck and shoulder


It's an understatement, but a Pittsburgh man is being called "lucky" for surviving a chainsaw accident in which the blade sever cut through his neck and shoulder. James Valentine, a landscaper, was sawing a tree branch 20 feet off the ground when he suddenly loss control of the tool. It "nicked my shoulder and chewed into my neck," he told a local newspaper. "It was the worst pain you could ever imagine."

What happened next is still fuzzy to the 21-year-old. He remembers shutting the saw off and being transported to a hospital where doctors were afraid he had cut his carotid artery, a major passageway between the neck and head. Paramedics at the scene detached the motor from the saw, but the blade wasn't removed until he arrived at the hospital in order to prevent further blood loss.

Fortunately for Valentine, the saw missed the carotid by less than half an inch. He's expected to make a full recovery, and says he isn't afraid to return to his job. "It was a freak accident that can happen any second, any time," he said. --Jordan Valinsky