Sarah de Lagarde slipped down a gap between her Tube carriage and the platform.The mum of two’s right arm and right leg were crushed her train left High Barnet, north London, and she was then hit by another service, last September.
She was not found for 10 minutes and medics could not save the limbs – but she hopes the metal electronic arm will restore part of her life. Its
AI software will learn the movements that she performs most often and help to make them easier.
She even jokes she is now one-fifth robot: “My two daughters are really excited and keep asking me how powerful it is and what it will be able to crush! There are two sides to AI. One is potentially quite fright when eating but on the other hand, excuse the pun, it can give me a piece of my life back.”
“It will be like moving the arm with my brain. The socket will attach to my upper arm and it will have sensors which detect my muscle twitches and the software will convert those impulses into arm movements.”
“The hand is able to hold an egg with three fingers or pick up a coin from a table.”
Days before her accident, Sarah, 44 – global head of communications for a big firm – scaled Mount Kilimanjaro with husband Jeremy.
She said: “As I lay on the track I remember thinking, ‘I’ve literally gone from the top of the world to rock bottom’.”
The family found NHS provision for prosthetic legs was good but just starting the process for an arm might take two years.
They took to fundraising for a bionic one from Leeds firm Covvi and Sarah has been preparing by flexing the arm and rotating the wrist, prior to a fitting this month.
She went back to work in February and said: “I should be able to type with two fingers. I am just trying to be strong for my children. I am incredibly lucky to still be here for them.”