The pole smashed through the windscreen of his truck and continued through his chest.
The father-of-two remained conscious long enough to telephone his disbelieving boss to say: "I've had a bit of an accident."
Mr Ripley, 39, said he owed his life to paramedics who airlifted him to hospital.
The delivery man was taking timber to engineering firm Henry Williams, in his home town, Darlington, when he collided with a steel horizontal barrier in August last year.
He told The Sunday Sun in Newcastle: "I just didn't see it at all. It went straight through my chest and out the back. There was seven or eight feet of pole sticking out.
"I just thought it was pinning me. I thought it was digging into my flesh but that was it. When I looked down I realised it had gone straight through I was very shocked. It was only two or three inches away from my heart. I was just staring up at the sky, thinking that's it, I'm going to die, I'm not going to see anyone again."
As Jason resigned himself to dying, his thoughts turned to his partner Helen Todd, 38, and sons Joshua, 19, and Jay, 11.
Fire crews cut a section of the pole away, before a helicopter from the Great North Air Ambulance arrived to take him to the James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough.
Within minutes, he was put into the hands of doctors who put him into an induced 24-hour coma. Surgeons cut into his ribs and slid the barrier out from the side, under his arm. He had to have one rib removed and another two bound together. Within months of the accident, he had returned to work.