Port Macquarie’s Chris Munro injured kitesurfing at Town Beach – Port Macquarie News

*Warning: readers are advised that this report contains graphic descriptions.

Port Macquarie’s Chris Munro smiles a lot for someone who partially severed a finger while kitesurfing at Town Beach.

Munro was kitesurfing on Friday afternoon, October 20, when his harness broke and the kite flew away.

“I swam after it for a bit before I decided to swim back to shore and flag down the lifeguards,” he said.

Lifeguards on jet skis helped Munro locate the kite at Middles surf break.

Munro said he started gathering the kite lines when a big swell came through.

“The biggest thing with that is making sure the ropes don’t get caught under the jet ski,” he said. “There’s 30 metres of lines, and it can get sucked up by the jet ski.

“I paddled over and sat on my board to start wrapping the lines up. At the same time, a big swell came through with the waves rolling in one after the other.”

Munro said that was when he felt one line slice through his middle finger.

“It was like a razor wire went straight through the finger. The lifeguard was circling on the jet ski, and I just looked up from my hand and said, ‘I think I need to go in.'”

Port Macquarie local Steve Quirk saw the incident from his unit at Town Beach.

“I noticed the kite starting to go past the kiosk with no rider on it,” he said. “I thought that someone was still in the water, so I got my binoculars out and had a look.

Port Macquaries Chris Munro partially severed a finger in a kitesurfing incident. Pictures supplied

Port Macquaries Chris Munro partially severed a finger in a kitesurfing incident. Pictures supplied

“It was pretty treacherous conditions.”

Munro said he didn’t know the extent of his injury until he got back into shore.

“It was sore, but it didn’t bleed a lot because there was almost nothing left,” he said. “They call it a degloving injury, where the top layers of skin are torn away.”

After bandaging up the injury at the beach, Munro’s partner Natalie Opitz took him to Port Macquarie Base Hospital.

From there, he was taken to John Hunter Hospital in Newcastle for further treatment.

Before surgery, Munro was advised that there was a chance he could lose the finger.

“I accepted that I was going to lose my finger,” he said. “The doctors warned me before the surgery as well.”

Luckily, the finger was able to be saved through a skin graft taken from the top of his thigh.

“I can still move it and everything,” he said.

Munro has spent the past week with his hand attached to his thigh while the skin graft takes effect.

“The doctors did an incredible job both here in Port Macquarie and in Newcastle,” Munro said. “I didn’t expect to have a finger after that injury, but I’m very impressed at what they can do.”

Munro will go back to John Hunter Hospital for more surgery on Thursday, November 2.

“They will detach it from my thigh and do a bit more of a skin graft then,” he said. “It should have its own blood supply by then too.

“Because there’s no nerves in the fingers now, down the track they said they can do a nerve transplant to get the finger fully functioning again as well.”

Fortunately, the kite was saved. Munro said he will get back to kitesurfing as soon as he is able.

Mardi Borg

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