Cycling Police Officer Struck By Hit And Run Motorist Wins Battle For Justice

Personal Injury Expert Calls For More Action To Protect Cyclists On Roads

18.03.2013

A London police officer seriously injured when he was knocked from his bicycle by a hit-and-run motorist says he hopes his story acts as a reminder of the importance of all cyclists and drivers sharing the road safely to prevent further injuries.

Oliver Fletcher suffered a fractured wrist that needed pinning back together, cracked ribs and grazed his left shoulder after he was struck by a car that turned directly into his path as he cycled to work in April 2011. The driver then fled the scene of the accident outside Lancaster Gate tube station.

The 34-year-old, who was unable to work for five months because of his injuries, instructed personal injury experts at law firm Irwin Mitchell to help him gain access to funds for the necessary rehabilitation and physiotherapy he needed. Now, he is speaking out after the firm secured him a five figure settlement from the Motor Insurers Bureau (MIB).

Sophie Davies, who specialises in helping road traffic accident victims at Irwin Mitchell, said: “Oliver suffered serious injuries because it would appear the driver was not paying attention and did not see him which meant the car cut across his path. To make matters worse, the driver then left without providing any details and to check whether Oliver was okay.

“Oliver needed intensive physiotherapy and rehabilitation to make the best possible recovery from his injuries so we pursued the claim with the MIB under their untraced driver’s agreement to provide the necessary funds.

“Cyclists are very vulnerable and sadly we deal with many cases on behalf of people serious injured, or the family of those killed, on Britain’s roads. In our experience, several factors contribute to accidents, including the poor state of the roads and a lack of awareness of other road users.

“Drivers need to be more vigilant and understanding while more needs to be done to ensure all road users have access to better safety training so that accidents like this can be prevented.”

Following the collision, Oliver was taken to hospital by ambulance where his injuries were diagnosed and after an operation to fix his fractured wrist, he needed external pins fitting to his arm to hold it together.

He was then unable to use his arm for two months until the pins were removed meaning his wife Clare had to help care for him.

Oliver, from Reading, said: “My commute to work as a police officer involved two trains and then a cycle from Paddington Station to my final destination. It was a trip I was very familiar with and I was always conscientious to ensure I could be seen on my bicycle.

“On the day of the accident everything happened very fast but I just remembered being in absolute agony and shock.

“I’ve had to have two operations to repair the damage to my arm and was forced to take five months off work because I couldn’t carry out my daily tasks. It was very frustrating, particularly because I missed out on overtime.

“I’ve had regular physiotherapy which has helped heal my injuries, but I’m now much more anxious on the roads. I still cycle but have sold my motorbike as I still don’t have full use of my arm which could cause problems.

“The settlement draws a line under what happened but I just hope me story acts as a reminder to all road users about the importance of sharing the road safely to prevent others from getting hurt.”

 

Read more about Irwin Mitchell's expertise relating to cycling claims