Wheelchair crashes into MR unit in narrow escape

A wheelchair was flung across the examination room and smashed into an MRI system, causing close to 24,000 euros in damage, reports the regional U.K. newspaper the Daily Echo.

Late last month, a patient had just finished a routine MRI examination at Southampton General Hospital in Southampton, U.K., when the magnets pulled the wheelchair toward the machine, bending it around the tube where moments before the patient had lain. Neither the patient nor the radiographer was injured. The incident occurred because a nurse wheeled the chair into the room, despite signs outside warning about entry.

The accident put the MRI machine out of commission for two days, and the hospital has launched an investigation to ensure the same mistake doesn't happen again, according to the Daily Echo.

"I just cannot understand how this was allowed to happen because everybody working in the hospital is aware of the strength of the machine and there are so many signs warning people not to enter while a scan is taking place," a hospital insider is quoted as saying. "The nurse was shouted at to get out but they still continued into the room and the wheelchair just shot across the room, slammed into the scanner and was bent round into the part where the patient lies. It's a miracle nobody was hurt or killed and something needs to be done to ensure all auxiliary nurses are aware of the dangers so this doesn't happen again."

A hospital spokesman reportedly said the incident was a result of human error, it is being taken very seriously, and management will continue to investigate to ensure all staff members adhere to stringent safety measures.

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