How doctors got a 2.5in nail out of a Stockport roofer’s foot

Rob Owen, 36, shot the masonry all the way through his toe with a nail gun when he tripped.
Rob Owen with his daughter Heidi  Credit: Rob Owen / SWNSRob Owen with his daughter Heidi  Credit: Rob Owen / SWNS
Rob Owen with his daughter Heidi Credit: Rob Owen / SWNS

A roofer was forced to cut off his own boot with a Stanley knife after he shot a nail all the way through his toe and out the other side.

Rob Owen, 36, tripped and leaned forward to break his fall, tapping the gun off his boot, triggering the release of a high-speed 2.5in nail straight into his left big toe.

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Working two floors up, the dad-of-two hobbled down the 20ft tall scaffolding and off to hospital, but medics couldn’t do an x-ray due to his metal tipped boot.

Warning: this story contains a graphic image

So after waiting for five hours, brave Rob grabbed the Stanley knife from his pocket, and cut his boot, to reveal his toe pinned to the sole of his boot.

Docs couldn’t pull it out because of rivets along the nail, so had to cut the head off and PUSH it through the bottom of his foot, on September 7.

The nail had gone through the bone, but Rob, from Stockport, Greater Manchester, said: “I was in shock.

Rob Owen foot with the nail in it. Credit; SWNS/Rob OwenRob Owen foot with the nail in it. Credit; SWNS/Rob Owen
Rob Owen foot with the nail in it. Credit; SWNS/Rob Owen

“The adrenalin was really pumping.

“It all happened so quickly - in a split second.

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“I didn’t realise at first, then I saw the nail sticking out the top of my boot.

“I’m just so lucky.

“It was a clean hole right through the bone in my toe, so there was no bleeding.

“Otherwise I could have bled to death in my boot.

“It was almost comical seeing this boot sole pinned to my foot, like something out of a joke shop.

“It will be a great story to tell, especially if I start limping when I’m 50.”

Rob Owen foot with the nail in it.  Credit: SWNSRob Owen foot with the nail in it.  Credit: SWNS
Rob Owen foot with the nail in it. Credit: SWNS
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Rob, a roofer from age 18, screamed when he shot himself, which alerted a colleague who drove him five miles to Wythenshawe hospital in Manchester.

The dad to Amelia, 15, and Heidi, five, had to take five weeks off work.

Married Rob added: “I’ll be more cautious when I’m using a nail gun now.

“If one was to hit you in the head you’d be dead.”

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