A WOMAN from Knottingley who was seriously injured by shrapnel in the Manchester Arena bomb blast has told how she stopped herself from bleeding to death by tying her handbag strap around her leg.
Josie Howarth, 61, was badly hurt along with her 59-year-old sister Janet Senior as the pair waited in the foyer for nieces Jodie, 14, and Jenny , 19, to come out of the Ariana Grande concert. Jenny led her younger niece to safety out of the back of the arena and both girls escaped injury. The Howarth family, who run the Wonkey Donkey sanctuary at Cridling Stubbs near Knottingley, were left traumatised by their ordeal. Josie Howarth said she had bought her nieces the Ariana Grande concert tickets as a Christmas present. Josie her sister Janet were stood around 15ft away from the bomber when he detonated the device. Josie said: I lost a lot of blood and my head started spinning. I knew I wouldn’t be conscious very long so I took the strap off my handbag and tied a tourniquet around my leg.”
Josie was in hospital for more than five weeks and underwent two operations to remove two bolts from her left thigh and a third procedure to seal the wound.
A bolt had smashed into her sister Janet’s collarbone and lodged in her neck. Janet had an operation to remove the bolt and plate and pin her damaged collarbone.