£35,000 settlement after cyclist knocked off his bike by a car, causing terrible injuries.
How to claim for a road traffic accident
Want to know more about claiming for a road traffic accident? Jargon free, we’ll explain your legal rights, letting you know everything you need to know about claiming.
How much compensation can I claim for a road traffic accident?
Read our medical negligence legal guides to understand your legal rights and how much compensation you may be able to claim.
“This case required the gathering of evidence to support Mr Wiatr’s claim for compensation on the basis that the driver of the car was driving without due care and attention when they pulled out of a side road and subsequently drove into the side of Mr Wiatr, who was travelling along the main road, knocking him off his bicycle,” adds Rachel Price.
Price continued: “The resulting injuries left my client in debilitating pain for months which stopped him from participating in the hobbies he loved and from being able to carry out simple daily tasks independently. I’m delighted that we were able to settle this case for Mr Wiatr, securing him £35,000 in compensation for the long-term impact this accident has had on his life, as well as for the cost to replace his valuable bicycle, watch and helmet.”
“The resulting injuries left my client in debilitating pain for months and stopped him from participating in the hobbies he loved.”
A simple journey that took a nasty turn.
One late morning in 2019, Andrew Wiatr was on his way back from his local bowls club centre having posted information to their noticeboard ahead of an upcoming match when he was struck off his bicycle. The driver of the car was emerging from a side road and accelerated into the side of Mr Wiatr as he was travelling down the main road.
“I was cycling down the main road going quite fast, probably close to 30pmh on my racing bike. I saw a car waiting to pull out of a side road and I couldn’t understand why he hadn’t already gone because the road was clear enough. When I got up alongside him, that’s when he pulled out and drove into the side of me.”
“When I got up alongside him, that’s when he pulled out and drove into the side of me.”
Mr Wiatr recalled the moment of the impact: “The bike flew off in one direction and I went in the other. I can’t give you a very clear impression of what those few seconds were like as I was pretty dazed. I remember being assisted by bystanders who helped me off of the road, which I now know I shouldn’t have done and I should have waited for the ambulance to arrive first. However, I didn’t want to be laying in the middle of a busy road.”
The bystanders helped Mr Wiatr to the side of the road and sat him down in the passenger side of the car that he had just collided with. “I didn’t realise that it was the same car when I first asked if I could sit in it, but I knew it would be more comfortable than sitting on the ground.
I could see how visibly upset and shaken the driver was and I shook his hand. The thing is, it happened and whether he should be driving or not was not my business.”
Emergency services attended the scene.
Mr Wiatr continued: “It was another bystander who called the emergency services and the police arrived sometime after the ambulance. I remember speaking with a female constable whilst I was in the back of the ambulance. It was her who told me ‘the driver (who seemed considerably older than me) won’t be driving for much longer.’
After giving Mr Wiatr a choice of hospitals in the area he could go to, the ambulance crew took him to Stepping Hill Hospital to be closer to his son’s home.
Mr Wiatr had a long wait in A&E for many hours before being taken for a CT Scan. Mr Wiatr also had an ultrasound to check for DVT (deep vein thrombosis) due to his family history. The CT results showed he had two small fractures on the right-hand side of his pelvis. “Although the fractures were relatively small, they kept me from doing things for a while. Fortunately, I didn’t require surgery and I was in the hospital for less than a week before being discharged.” His ultrasound showed no signs of DVT.
“Although the fractures were relatively small, they kept me from doing things for a while.”
“In order to be discharged, one of the conditions I was given was to be able to walk up and down a small flight of stairs.” Mr Wiatr continued, “But I could only do this after I was given some strong medication. I think the hospital wanted to free up my bed and I feel I was discharged earlier than I should have been. Walking without medication was extremely painful and I wasn’t able to climb any stairs at all.”
A slow and frustrating recovery
After spending approximately four days in the hospital, Mr Wiatr was discharged but he had to rely on the help of others, “I probably shouldn’t have been discharged so soon. When I was leaving the hospital a passing paramedic saw my son and me struggling and luckily he came over to help me into the car. When I got home, my son carried a bed and mattress downstairs for me to sleep on and my late wife had to look after me.”
“I used to spend half my waking hours at my allotment and it was very frustrating not being able to go there or do anything for myself.”
Having already retired at the time of the accident, Mr Wiatr didn’t require time off work but his injuries took away his independence, leaving him heavily dependent on family members to help do simple tasks whilst he recovered. He was also unable to participate in the many hobbies that he enjoyed including bowls, darts, cycling and spending time at his allotment. “I used to spend half my waking hours at my allotment and it was very frustrating not being able to go there or do anything for myself.”
During the accident, Mr Wiatr had scratched his leg and whilst he was recovering at home, the cut had become infected. “I had an abrasion to the front left side of my leg, just above my ankle. I didn’t take any notice of it at the time of the accident, but there was quite a bit of broken skin. Whilst I was recovering I noticed it had become infected, so I called 111 and a doctor came out to me and issued some antibiotics. These cleared up the infection and although the skin on that part of my leg is still very thin and would bleed quite easily if it were knocked, I have full use of my legs and it doesn’t cause me any issues now.”
Making a claim.
Mr Wiatr was personally recommended to Express Solicitors through a friend from his allotment.
“Although the timescale wasn’t ideal, which was partly due to the pandemic slowing everything down, Rachel was great to work with. I had to claim for a variety of my possessions that were damaged including my bike, helmet and my watch. Really, I just wanted my money back so I wouldn’t be out of pocket and had the driver’s solicitor made me a reasonable offer earlier on, I probably would have accepted that and ended up with far less.”
“The amount of compensation I received was in line with what Express Solicitors told me I could expect, which was good.”
Mr Wiatr continued, “The amount of compensation I received was in line with what Express Solicitors told me I could expect, which was good.”
Mr Wiatr shared that he has made almost a full recovery since his accident. “My fitness levels have certainly dropped after not being able to go to the gym for such a long time. I have managed to return slowly, but I can’t do the level of exercise that I used to be able to do. I’m not in lasting pain, which is good.”
Mr Wiatr is yet to spend his compensation award but says he may now book a holiday, “I’m not rich by any means, but I don’t typically spend a lot of money. I’ve already bought myself another bike, but I think I will treat myself to a nice holiday now the money has come through.”