Serious Injury Lawyers Secure Settlement For 24-Year-Old To Help Fund Ongoing Rehabilitation
A Bradford man who sustained a brain injury when he was knocked off his BMX bike has revealed his determination to overcome his ordeal and get his “life back.”
Louis Priestley, from the Wrose area of Shipley, was cycling to his grandmother’s house when he was hit by a BMW travelling 29mph in a 20mph zone.
He was thrown over the bonnet of the car and hit his head on the windscreen, knocking him unconscious. He landed around 13 metres along the road.
Louis was taken to hospital by ambulance where he was diagnosed with a fractured skull and a traumatic brain injury. He also sustained injuries to his right knee, shoulder and thigh, and suffered a perforated ear drum
The crash happened near the junction of Ashbourne Way and Brisbane Avenue, Bradford. Following the incident, Louis’s mum Andrea Mitchell, instructed expert serious injury lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to help her son access the specialist rehabilitation and therapies he requires as part of his recovery.
Ahead of Action for Brain Injury Week, Louis, now aged 24, Louis has spoken out on how he is moving forward with his recovery. It comes after his legal team secured him an undisclosed settlement from the driver’s insurers to fund his ongoing care and rehabilitation.
Expert Opinion“Understandably Louis has found it incredibly difficult coming to terms with the physical and psychological impact of his brain injury.
“While he continues to face many challenges, he has made remarkable progress with his recovery and has shown such courage in attempting to overcome his injuries and look to a more positive future.
“We’re pleased to have been able to secure a settlement for Louis, which will help fund the treatment and support he needs, while also enabling him to move forward with his life as best he can.
“With Action for Brain Injury Week upon us, Louis’s story is also a stark reminder of the dangers of speeding and how lives can be changed in a split second. We join in him in urging drivers to take care on the roads at all times.” Emma Melia, Serious Injury Lawyer
The crash happened on 14 February, 2016, when Louis was 16.
He spent four days in hospital. Following his discharge home, he was looked after by mum Andrea and his sister. He was subsequently found to have extensive ligament damage to his knee and underwent physiotherapy and associated rehabilitation for six months.
At the time, Louis was studying plastering at Bradford College. Following the accident, he struggled with some of the physical aspects of the course. He also had to take some time out for knee reconstruction surgery in October 2016.
Louis passed the course but can’t work as a plasterer due to his injuries as he can’t do lower level work which involves kneeling and bending.
He currently works on the production line for a manufacturer of radiators and coolers for motor vehicles, but struggles with tiredness when doing long shifts because of his brain injury.
In his spare time, he goes to the gym. He also sees a neuropsychologist to help with his moods and anxiety since the crash.
Louis said “I try my best not to dwell on the negatives as I have come so far in my recovery. I can do a lot more now than a few years ago, even going to the gym regularly. My knee hurts after around five to seven minutes of running on the treadmill but I push through it and carry on as I feel that’s the only way I can get better at it.
“After the crash, I relied heavily on my mum and sister, but over the past seven years I’ve gradually regained some of my independence.
“It wasn’t just the physical side of things I had to work on though. I’ve struggled with sleeping but it’s slowly improving, and I’ve focused a lot on my mental health as I suffered with anxiety and depression after the crash.
“While I can’t change what’s happened to me, I know I’m lucky to still be here. I’m still young, so I’m determined to continue pushing forward with my recovery so I can get my life back on track.
“I just hope that by sharing my story, I can urge others to stay safe on the roads. I wouldn’t wish what I’ve been through on anyone.”
Action for Brain Injury Week runs from 15-21 May and is supported by the charity Headway. This year’s campaign is entitled Take a Second and focuses on how it can take just a few seconds for someone’s life to be changed by a brain injury. More information is available at www.headway.org.uk