A father of three who was left for dead after his bike was hit by a car on his way to work has received a six figure sum in damages after help from his trade union lawyers.

The 43-year-old from Leeds nearly died in the hit and run accident in September 2006. He suffered multiple fractures and a serious head injury when his bike was hit from behind by a car travelling around 40 mph.

The impact threw him onto the car’s bonnet and then 15 meters across the road. Shockingly the driver of the car failed to stop and the critically injured man was helped by another cyclist who called an ambulance.

The former technician for Coca Cola Enterprises had cycled the same route for 20 years without incident.

Multiple injuries sustained in accident

He was in intensive care for several weeks with a broken pelvis, shoulder blade and lower right leg. He also lost his long and short term memory and suffered injuries to his lower back, neck and knees.

Five years on he still walks with a stick and suffers from pain.

His injuries are so severe he has been told he is unlikely to ever return to work. But despite his disabilities he has been volunteering as a befriender for a local charity.

Following the accident he contacted his trade union Unite which instructed its lawyers Thompsons Solicitors to investigate a claim for compensation.

Compensation has helped to pay for much needed treatment

Thompsons was able to secure an interim payment of £5,000 to enable him to get rehabilitation treatment before settling the claim out of court.

The injured man said: “This accident has changed my life in every way. Before I was happy-go-lucky. I loved sport and cycled to work most days. Now, I’m unable to work and even if I was physically able to, I’m frightened to death of ever getting on a bike again.

“I feel lucky to be alive. I know there was a point when they thought I wouldn’t pull through, but the lasting impact of this accident has effected every part of my family’s life.

“It’s a real relief to know that my case has finally been settled. As soon as I contacted Unite I felt the burden lift from my shoulders. I was confident that Unite and Thompsons would do their best for me and they’ve lived up to their promises. No amount of compensation can reverse the injuries and lasting impact of my accident, but it has helped to pay for much needed treatment to help me find ways to cope. ”

Driver failed to pay full attention to the road

Arian Axtell, regional secretary at Unite added: “Many of our members commute to work by bike and this can put them in a vulnerable position. Our free legal service protects members if they are injured in non-workplace accidents and our legal team were able to help our member gain the full compensation he needs for the very serious injuries he suffered and the fact that he is no longer able to work and the costs of his care and rehabilitation.

Samantha Hemsley from Thompsons Solicitors said: “We are delighted we have been able to settle this claim for this member. He cycled the same route to work for two decades and was never involved in an accident. Sadly all it took to change his life forever was one driver who failed to pay full attention to the road. He deserves every penny of this compensation.”