A Huddersfield man has been awarded £6,000 damages by Kirklees Council after a pothole in a road caused him to fall off his bike and partially sever his left ear.
Jason Bottomley, 25, of Marsh Lane, Shepley, secured his award with help from Helen Price, of the public liability unit at national law firm Irwin Mitchell, based at its offices in Sheffield's Riverside.
Mr Bottomley was cycling along Penistone Road, in Birds Edge, Huddersfield, at the time of the accident in March last year.
He said: "I was travelling along the A629 towards Shepley, and was concentrating very hard on a right-hand bend in the road ahead of me. I didn't see the large pothole coming up and my front wheel hit it, throwing me off my bike."
As Mr Bottomley hit the ground, his bike frame snapped in half. His ear was partially severed and he suffered cuts, bruises and swelling to his face, head, hands, arms and legs.
He said: "I was taken to Barnsley District General Hospital, but was then transferred to the plastic surgery department at Sheffield's Northern General. I underwent reconstruction surgery to fully reattach my left ear."
Mr Bottomley was in hospital for two nights but has been left with permanent scarring to his ear, neck, shoulder and knees. He has also sustained a loss of contour to his ear.
He said: "As a result of the accident, I had to take two weeks off from my job as an operations manager for City Facilities Management and was unable to undertake hobbies, including running, swimming, tennis and cycling, for a few weeks."
Claim Against The Council
Helen Price said: "Kirklees Council initially denied liability when Mr Bottomley contacted them himself, claiming they had an adequate system of inspection in place for potholes. But this decision was reversed when we became involved and sent them a letter of claim. Liability was then accepted, with a small deduction for contributory negligence.
"The council was responsible for failing to maintain or repair the road surface, which was left in a dangerous condition for vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians. This case highlights the importance of health and safety checks on the roads to ensure accidents and injuries, such as those suffered by Mr Bottomley and worse, are avoided."
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