A couple of inches proved to be the difference between life and death for a Saskatoon man who was struck by a car on the side of Circle Drive.
“My leg was out of the car and she struck me, I don’t know exactly how she hit me, but by the looks of my leg … my leg hit the runner and that may have save my life,” Cas Silva told CKOM.
At around 8:30 a.m. on Jan. 19, the same day Saskatoon police received 44 collisions due to slick and icy roads, Silva got a call from his coworker asking for help getting him out of the ditch on Circle Drive North near the 33rd Street exit.
“I was trying to get him out of the ditch but once I looked up I realized I couldn’t see him and I couldn’t see around my side,” Silva said, adding that’s when he opened his door to get out.
“When I got out my left leg was getting out and my body was still inside and that’s when I got struck by someone who slid on the road and grabbed my leg but miraculously it didn’t do much besides bruise me.”
Still having enough strength to walk, Silva stumbled to a safe spot on the side of the road to lie down. Luckily another person pulled over, a woman who said she was on her way to an interview, pulled out a sweater to keep Silva’s body warm while she called 9-1-1.
Sitting in the emergency room the 38-year-old airport mechanic said all he could think about was how lucky he was that he hadn’t taken another step out of the car before being hit.
“If I was just five centimetres further out of the vehicle she would’ve got my body and I wouldn’t have been able to survive that because she was coming in pretty fast,” Silva said, adding the woman who hit him stopped and was in a state of shock as well after what happened. “Doctors are surprised I didn’t break anything.”
If you can imagine, things only got worse from there. Silva said while waiting for x-rays he got a call from his sister, telling him his 102-year-old grandmother in Spain had passed away just an hour earlier.
“I lived (with her in Spain) for 11 years and she basically took care of me so she was really important to me,” Silva said. “I was crying in the hospital and the doctors asked me why I was crying and I couldn’t get the words out to explain.”
Reflecting on how close he came to meeting his maker, Silva said what happened still hasn’t fully sunk in. And while he doesn’t blame the driver who hit him, he does extend his deepest thanks to the people who helped him including one man wearing a reflective vest, who directed traffic away from Silva making room for emergency crews when they arrived.