A woman has issued a warning about the dangers of putting your feet on the dashboard after a car accident left her without a forehead.
Gráinne Kealy’s knees broke every bone in her face when her boyfriend’s jeep skidded on a patch of black ice, hit a wall, and triggered the airbag, firing her knees toward her head.
The accident in 2006 left the then 22-year-old with a minor brain injury and severe injuries to her face, which was so damaged that surgeons had to remove her forehead.
Having spotted celebrities including Kim Kardashian and Lady Gaga with their feet on the dashboard in several shared snapshots, Gráinne, who lives in Ireland, decided to share a message to her Facebook warning about the dangers.
“This breaks my heart to think of how many millions of people have seen these celebrities with their feet on the dashboard,” she wrote.
“I can only hope that people will eventually learn from my mistake.”
Gráinne has previously described what happened to her in several posts on Facebook.
“I had bought a new pair of Ugg boots and knew that I wouldn’t dirty the dashboard,” she wrote. “Silly when you think about it! By doing this my feet were placed directly on top of the airbag without realising.”
“When the jeep collided with the wall the airbags inflated as they do but because my feet were on top of mine it actually pushed my feet, knees first, into my face.”
She went on to explain that airbags inflate at a speed of 200mph.
“I kneed myself in the face at 200mph! Sounds a lot worse now doesn’t it?” she continued.
Following the accident, Gráinne was left with multiple facial fractures (“my mother was told that I had broken every bone in my face”), a CSF (Cerebrospinal Fluid) leak from her brain and she also lost two teeth.
“One of my first memories is looking in the mirror for the first time. I didn’t recognise the face looking back at me. That is one of the worse memories I have and one that I hope with all my heart not many people will ever have to go through,” she wrote.
Doctors later told her that her knees had pushed her face inward and upward and that it would need needed apart and putting back together. And in 207 following a set back she had to have her forehead removed.
“Yes……my forehead! And yes……..all of it! I lived without my forehead for two years until the 17th of June 2009 when I got my brand new Italian ceramic forehead,” she wrote.
Gráinne made the brave decision to share her story after seeing so many people with their feet up in their cars.
She hoped that by sharing images of her injuries it will help others think twice about putting their feet on the dashboard.
And she has been overwhelmed by the public response to her message.
“The response to my post has been unbelievable,” she told Yahoo UK. “I couldn’t have imagined it reaching so many people around the world.
“It took me a long time to build up the courage to share my photos. I knew there was a chance I would get negative comments about them and I needed to be strong enough in myself to be able to deal with that.”
Despite some negative comments, Kealy says she’s received many more kind and thoughtful messages.
“I have received so many lovely messages from people all around the world thanking me for sharing my story and telling me that they will never put their feet up on the dashboard again.
“Knowing I am making a difference makes sharing my story and my photo’s worth it. I couldn’t have asked for a better response.”