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Case Study

Amputee claim: Remarkable story of cyclist crushed by cement lorry on Old Street roundabout

Our client Sarah Doone, 38 at the time, was cycling to work around Old Street roundabout in east London in July. She worked as a technician for Al-Jazeera television.

The driver of a huge cement lorry pulled Sarah and her bike under its front wheels and very nearly crushed her to death. Its back wheels just stopped in time. Sarah clearly remembers thinking she was going to die.

As she was trapped under the lorry, two over-duty paramedics rushed to help her. When the Air Ambulance arrived at the scene, a doctor and paramedic used a battlefield technique called Reboa to stem the catastrophic bleeding. She was then airlifted to the Royal London hospital, Whitechapel. Sarah suffered severe injuries to both legs and her left leg had to be amputated.

Sarah instructed Jill to pursue a claim on her behalf against the insurers of the lorry. Jill was able to achieve interim funding while the case progressed to make sure Sarah received vital rehabilitation care once she was released from hospital.  A move to a suitable flat was organised and therapy arranged alongside a high quality prosthetic limb created by a specialist provider.

Sarah will need prosthetics for the rest of her life and the high quality prosthetic, such as a Genium X3 microprocessor leg, is not available on the NHS. These legs are the most intuitive and technologically advanced microprocessor knees on the market enabling those most able to push the boundaries of what they can do. A great deal of support and retraining is needed and there can be complications, but such legs make a huge difference to people's lives.

Sarah has made a remarkable recovery, managing to continue her job and campaigning for better safety for cyclists, including calling for restrictions on large construction lorries in London and being an integral part of the Mayor of London's decision to an overhaul Old Street roundabout, a notorious black spot for cycling accidents. Work began to replace the roundabout with a two-way loop, with segregated space for cyclists. And Islington council is said to be developing plans to close Old Street and Clerkenwell Road to through traffic.

Sarah's sister Rachel later ran the London marathon to raise funds for the Air Ambulance, a registered charity.

Jill Greenfield commented: "Sarah is truly remarkable in how she has coped in the most difficult of circumstances. Unfortunately I have dealt with a number of such severe accidents on roundabouts in London and I was pleased to see that at least progress has been made regarding Old Street roundabout; which will no doubt save others from a similar fate."

Sarah said: "Jill and her team were incredible and instrumental in dealing with the case so I could push on and concentrate fully on my recovery. Because of this, I have made a full return to work and also manage to take on extra work as a freelancer. This is a credit to the Fieldfisher team including Lizanne Gumbel QC, plus Kat and Jamie from PACE rehab, who also pushed me physically while taking the pressure from me on the case side of things."

Contact us

For further information about amputation claims and cycling accident claims, please call Jill Greenfield on 020 7861 4557 or email jill.greenfield@fieldfisher.com.

Alternatively

All enquiries are completely free of charge and we will investigate all funding options for you including no win, no fee.

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