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Firefighter 'Nearly Paralysed' In Cycling Injury

Man Hit 50cm Pothole On Bicycle


A firefighter from Sidmouth suffered serious injuries that almost left him paralysed after cycling over a pothole on a stretch of the A375.

Speaking to the Sidmouth Herald, the 45-year-old man said he was enjoying a lunchtime ride when his bike hit a pothole more than 50cm long and 4cm deep, throwing him over the handlebars.

After an hour-long wait for an ambulance, he was taken to the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital, where an X-ray and CT scan revealed two broken vertebrae.

The surgeon told him that if he had landed differently, his injuries could have paralysed him. The man has also been told he will be unable to return to his work at the fire service for the foreseeable future.

"It brings it home. It makes you realise, something so simple – you are going along enjoying yourself then you could be in a wheelchair the next minute just because of a pothole in the road," he told the newspaper.

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury in a cycling accident, you may be able to claim compensation. See our Road Traffic Accident Claims page for more information.

Expert Opinion
This incident illustrated the dangers posed to cyclists on the UK’s roads. In this case a man was left with serious injuries, which could have been a lot worse and resulted in paralysis.

“It indicates the importance of investment in cycling infrastructure, which includes resurfacing roads to remove hazards such as potholes, developing specialised junctions for cyclists and improving cycle routes, in a bid to improve road safety and protect vulnerable road users.”
Neil Whiteley, Partner

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