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Crowd saved Deliveroo cyclist by pushing van off his neck

No criminal action will be taken against driver of hire van

A Bristol doctor has described how he encouraged a crowd to push a hire van off a Deliveroo rider who had ended up trapped underneath it following a collision. Vinay Pandya said the vehicle had been on the man’s neck and that he would have died within a minute if bystanders hadn’t managed to get it off him.

The Bristol Post reports that Pandya was getting a coffee in the Clifton Triangle branch of Pret a Manger just after 2pm yesterday when he heard ‘terrible screaming’.

Heading outside, he saw a van coming to a stop outside the Wills Memorial Building with people rushing towards it.

“I ran around the van and all I could see was a head sticking out from underneath,” he said.

“The van was completely covering him, and his body was diagonally underneath with the back wheel next to his head. His neck was right in front of the back wheel.

“I told the crowd to let me through as I am a doctor, and got to him. I checked for a pulse and he did have one, but he was unconscious and not breathing with eyes half open and rolled back.

“I instantly realised that the tyre was squeezing down on his neck, that this was what was crushing his neck and stopping him from breathing. I knew that the wheel had to come off his neck right away.”

Although one bystander shouted that no-one should do anything until an ambulance arrived, Pandya disagreed.

“I shouted ‘I’m a doctor and I’m telling you to fucking move the van back.’ Another man in the crowd got everyone organised really quickly, and I think someone must’ve gone in and released the handbrake.

“It was no mean feat, because they pushed it gently uphill just seven or eight inches, and it was enough to get the wheel away from his neck.

“I didn’t know too much about how many people did that, or how, because I was down there with him, holding his head, but it worked.

“As soon as the pressure on his neck was eased, he began to breathe and I breathed a huge sigh of relief. Then he regained consciousness. He was able to tell me his name, and he had lots of injuries to his head and face.

“Then the paramedics arrived and I was able to hand over to them. He was still stuck fast – I think the saddle of his bike was wedged under him and the van was completely on top of him.”

The van driver was detained at the scene, but police have since confirmed that no criminal action will be taken against him.

At 4.30pm yesterday a spokesperson for the Avon and Somerset Police said the man's injuries were not life-threatening. "The man is in a serious but stable condition in hospital."

A spokesperson for Deliveroo said: "We are aware of reports of an accident involving a rider and we are investigating. We are in touch with the authorities and will offer any support we can.

"Looking after our rider safety and welfare is an important priority for us and we know that riders frequently go above and beyond when bringing customers their meals.

"All Deliveroo riders are automatically covered with a first-of-its-kind global insurance package, whenever they are working with us to protect them and their earnings if they are involved in an accident."

Alex has written for more cricket publications than the rest of the road.cc team combined. Despite the apparent evidence of this picture, he doesn't especially like cake.

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25 comments

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zero_trooper | 5 years ago
1 like

After reading the updates it would appear that the driver has been released without charge ​pending ​further police enquiries.

No doubt some extremely long-winded paper trails to prove or disprove if the medical condition was known of beforehand.

As an aside there is a facility on the DVLA website to report medical conditions.

Avatar
Mungecrundle | 5 years ago
3 likes

There was a horrendous incident a few years back where a bin lorry driver passed out and ended up killing 6 people in Edinburgh. He had covered up previous medical history that would have prevented him from driving and he still got away with it, as in avoiding a custodial sentence. Despite then being banned he was caught driving about 9 months after the fatal incident and still avoided a jail sentence!

Without really commenting on this incident in particular, there is always a first instance of a previously unknown medical condition manifesting itself, which may be the case or it could be something that was known about and ignored. Either way there does seem to be a case for a review of fitness to drive requirements which would almost certainly prevent more tragedy and suffering than a specific dangerous cycling law.

Hope the victim recovers fully, and chapeau to all those involved in the first response and who took action on the day to prevent what could have been an even worse situation if the press accounts are to be trusted.

 

Avatar
burtthebike replied to Mungecrundle | 5 years ago
1 like
Mungecrundle wrote:

There was a horrendous incident a few years back where a bin lorry driver passed out and ended up killing 6 people in Edinburgh. He had covered up previous medical history that would have prevented him from driving and he still got away with it, as in avoiding a custodial sentence. Despite then being banned he was caught driving about 9 months after the fatal incident and still avoided a jail sentence!

Just imagine the sentence he'd have got if he'd been riding a bike.

Either way there does seem to be a case for a review of fitness to drive requirements which would almost certainly prevent more tragedy and suffering than a specific dangerous cycling law.

Like the one the government promised four years ago you mean?

Avatar
dreamlx10 replied to Mungecrundle | 5 years ago
1 like
Mungecrundle wrote:

There was a horrendous incident a few years back where a bin lorry driver passed out and ended up killing 6 people in Edinburgh.

 

 

It was in Glasgow

Avatar
OldRidgeback replied to Mungecrundle | 5 years ago
1 like
Mungecrundle wrote:

There was a horrendous incident a few years back where a bin lorry driver passed out and ended up killing 6 people in Edinburgh. He had covered up previous medical history that would have prevented him from driving and he still got away with it, as in avoiding a custodial sentence. Despite then being banned he was caught driving about 9 months after the fatal incident and still avoided a jail sentence!

Without really commenting on this incident in particular, there is always a first instance of a previously unknown medical condition manifesting itself, which may be the case or it could be something that was known about and ignored. Either way there does seem to be a case for a review of fitness to drive requirements which would almost certainly prevent more tragedy and suffering than a specific dangerous cycling law.

Hope the victim recovers fully, and chapeau to all those involved in the first response and who took action on the day to prevent what could have been an even worse situation if the press accounts are to be trusted.

 

 

It was in Glasgow. But otherwise...

Avatar
OldRidgeback | 5 years ago
4 likes

Having read the account of this incident I find it of concern that the local police are not taking action against the driver. All the witness comments say the cyclist did nothing wrong.

If you read the small print to do with driving licences, it basically says that if you have a medical condition that affects your ability to drive, then you should not drive. Ignoring that is an offence surely?

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to OldRidgeback | 5 years ago
0 likes
OldRidgeback wrote:

Having read the account of this incident I find it of concern that the local police are not taking action against the driver. All the witness comments say the cyclist did nothing wrong.

If you read the small print to do with driving licences, it basically says that if you have a medical condition that affects your ability to drive, then you should not drive. Ignoring that is an offence surely?

However, an unforeseeable medical condition could happen to anyone at anytime. The driver didn't try to flee the scene and voluntarily handed in his driving license while this is being investigated and I believe he went straight to the hospital to get checked out.

It sounds like the driver acted responsibly.

Avatar
Yorkshire wallet | 5 years ago
7 likes

Medical condition? Too many of those on the roads.

I work with a narcoleptic...... Who is allowed to drive. No kidding he is allowed to drive. Falls asleep at his desk every day but allowed to drive. It's a joke.

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jacknorell | 5 years ago
0 likes

I've got three words for that Jonny Lennon chap:

Cool story bro

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hawkinspeter | 5 years ago
1 like

...and there's an update on the Bristol Post that seems to back up Mr Lennon's account: Police reveal why they are not taking action against Clifton Triangle crash van driver

Quote from the police:

Police Spokesperson wrote:

Yesterday (August 29) at about 2.10pm in Queens Road, the driver of a van suffered an unforeseeable medical episode which resulted in the van colliding with a male cyclist.

The driver has since been treated at hospital for this. He has voluntarily surrendered his driving licence while enquiries are ongoing.

A number of people helped the cyclist in the moments before the emergency services arrived.

The man was taken to hospital with serious injuries, however, they were not believed to be life-threatening

Sounds like the cyclist was very lucky.

Avatar
brooksby replied to hawkinspeter | 5 years ago
1 like
hawkinspeter wrote:

...and there's an update on the Bristol Post that seems to back up Mr Lennon's account: Police reveal why they are not taking action against Clifton Triangle crash van driver

Quote from the police:

Police Spokesperson wrote:

Yesterday (August 29) at about 2.10pm in Queens Road, the driver of a van suffered an unforeseeable medical episode which resulted in the van colliding with a male cyclist.

The driver has since been treated at hospital for this. He has voluntarily surrendered his driving licence while enquiries are ongoing.

A number of people helped the cyclist in the moments before the emergency services arrived.

The man was taken to hospital with serious injuries, however, they were not believed to be life-threatening

Sounds like the cyclist was very lucky.

Just read that story, and I withdraw my query about injury by careless driving.

I hope that the driver didn't already know about their condition and just ignore it to stay in work (like that Scottish bin lorry driver a few years ago...).

If it really was a genuinely unforseeable and previously unknown condition, then I'm not sure what anyone could do about it; but they'd better make sure they don't drive any more until this is all resolved.

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bikeandy61 | 5 years ago
11 likes

Irrespective of what actually happened. Let's contrast and compare with the arrest of the cyclist who hit the lady in London this week. Yes he was a dick/panicked and left the scene. But did eventually turn himself in. One of the three charges he is facing is "causing actual bodily harm". So why is the van driving not facing at least this charge? Oh yes, he was in a motor vehicle not a push bike. Obvs.

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joethearachnid | 5 years ago
3 likes

"Although one bystander shouted that no-one should do anything until an ambulance arrived"

I realise that people are terrified of getting sued and whatnot, but really? There's a guy lying in the street with a van on his neck and you're content to just watch? Even excluding the fact that we have Good Samaritan laws in the UK to protect people trying to help, this is just an appalling attitude.

Avatar
Mark B replied to joethearachnid | 5 years ago
7 likes
joethearachnid wrote:

"Although one bystander shouted that no-one should do anything until an ambulance arrived"

I realise that people are terrified of getting sued and whatnot, but really? There's a guy lying in the street with a van on his neck and you're content to just watch? Even excluding the fact that we have Good Samaritan laws in the UK to protect people trying to help, this is just an appalling attitude.

In general you need to be very careful moving people who might have broken necks or backs. I would assume that is why the bystander shouted not to do anything. Obviously, terrible advice where the casualty is unable to breathe, but perhaps the bystander didn't realise that.

 

Avatar
jollygoodvelo replied to Mark B | 5 years ago
0 likes
Mark B wrote:
joethearachnid wrote:

"Although one bystander shouted that no-one should do anything until an ambulance arrived"

I realise that people are terrified of getting sued and whatnot, but really? There's a guy lying in the street with a van on his neck and you're content to just watch? Even excluding the fact that we have Good Samaritan laws in the UK to protect people trying to help, this is just an appalling attitude.

In general you need to be very careful moving people who might have broken necks or backs. I would assume that is why the bystander shouted not to do anything. Obviously, terrible advice where the casualty is unable to breathe, but perhaps the bystander didn't realise that.

 

Quite right - I'd assume this was well-intentioned application of general first-aid recommendations, with an unfortunate failure to appreciate that a casualty who is in a situation that poses further risk to them should have that situation made safe before addressing other factors.  It's "DR ABC" now, not just ABC.

http://www.sja.org.uk/sja/first-aid-advice/what-to-do-as-a-first-aider/h...

Avatar
brooksby | 5 years ago
1 like

Is this the story where a commenter BTL claims to be a witness, and said that the van moved from left-hand lane to right-hand lane and straight over the cyclist?  Causing injury by careless driving, surely...?

Avatar
fenix replied to brooksby | 5 years ago
3 likes
brooksby wrote:

Is this the story where a commenter BTL claims to be a witness, and said that the van moved from left-hand lane to right-hand lane and straight over the cyclist?  Causing injury by careless driving, surely...?

 

So you're not sure if it is the sme incident but happy to accuse the driver of careless driving ? 

 

None of us were there - I think the Police are best to judge the situation. 

Avatar
zero_trooper replied to fenix | 5 years ago
6 likes
fenix wrote:
brooksby wrote:

Is this the story where a commenter BTL claims to be a witness, and said that the van moved from left-hand lane to right-hand lane and straight over the cyclist?  Causing injury by careless driving, surely...?

 

So you're not sure if it is the sme incident but happy to accuse the driver of careless driving ? 

 

None of us were there - I think the Police are best to judge the situation. 

'I think the police are best to judge' - guy is seriously injured and police nfa it in less than 24hrs Doesn't sound like that the rider was in any shape to make a statement.

Avatar
brooksby replied to fenix | 5 years ago
5 likes
fenix wrote:
brooksby wrote:

Is this the story where a commenter BTL claims to be a witness, and said that the van moved from left-hand lane to right-hand lane and straight over the cyclist?  Causing injury by careless driving, surely...?

 

So you're not sure if it is the sme incident but happy to accuse the driver of careless driving ? 

None of us were there - I think the Police are best to judge the situation. 

OK, its a turn of phrase that I say "Is it..." when opening a comment like this: its just how I speak (and write).  The first story about this that I read on the Post website had the comment BTL that I've mentioned.  I hate that site and can't be bothered to search through it beyond all the "Do this survey to read the story" type cr@p.

That stretch of road is a drag strip, a real nightmare, with people speeding away from the lights and swapping lanes to go or not go down Park Street, and the van in question was a hire van, so it doesn't seem beyond the realm of possibility.

But, y'know, I'm sure the police are completely unbiased and will take everything into consideration (first arresting the driver at the scene after he left without apparently even realising he'd run anyone over according to witnesses, but now letting him go with no criminality suspected...).

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to fenix | 5 years ago
8 likes
fenix wrote:
brooksby wrote:

Is this the story where a commenter BTL claims to be a witness, and said that the van moved from left-hand lane to right-hand lane and straight over the cyclist?  Causing injury by careless driving, surely...?

 

So you're not sure if it is the sme incident but happy to accuse the driver of careless driving ? 

 

None of us were there - I think the Police are best to judge the situation. 

There's another article on the Bristol Post: https://www.bristolpost.co.uk/news/bristol-news/meet-hero-who-jumped-mov...

Jonny Lennon wrote:

There were people at the crossing there, and the Deliveroo cyclist was there too, then in my periphery I saw this van coming down the road and I thought ‘he’s not going to stop!'

He didn’t and took the cyclist out head on. How he didn’t see him, I don’t know - he must have done. The cyclist was standing up on his pedals with a bright Deliveroo backpack on and he was knocked down by the van and the bike and him went under the van.

I jumped up and over the wall and the van just kept going. I was running alongside it on the passenger side screaming. I was on London Bridge and I initially thought ‘f*** me, this is a terrorist attack. Up ahead I could see there was a big crowd of people all around the Gromit that’s in front of the Wills Memorial Building, and I thought ‘maybe he’s going for them’. That’s what it looked like.

While I was running, the front wheels went over the kid and the bike - he still didn’t stop.

I grabbed the side door screaming at him to stop. I jumped into the passenger seat and then he looked at me.

I thought ‘he’s going to crash’. I can see all these people ahead, so I held the steering wheel straight to keep the van on the road.

He started hitting me, back-handing me. I started to look for the keys, I couldn’t see where the handbrake was. I looked down at his feet and I put my head down, let go of the steering wheel and dived between his knees.

I pulled his feet back off the pedals. He was on the clutch and the accelerator and I got his feet off and reached back and flicked the gear stick out of gear.

I was thinking ‘this is it’. I sat up and we were wrestling, the van was out of gear and slowing, we were freewheeling, but still moving.

I realised that the handbrake was in a funny place, tucked away next to the seat I was on, and I was sitting on it, so I yanked it back and brought the van to a stop,” he added.

He was still trying to wrestle with me. I kept looking around in the van. The attackers on London Bridge had knives strapped to their arms when they were in the van, and I was looking to see if he had weapons.

I suddenly thought ‘being in this van, this isn’t a very good idea’, so I jumped out and went to see the guy under the van. Some other guys had come up and were at the driver’s door and shouting at him to get out.

I ran to the back and I got down and there was a guy there holding his head and checking him

"No action to be taken" against the driver.

Avatar
gonedownhill replied to hawkinspeter | 5 years ago
0 likes
hawkinspeter wrote:
fenix wrote:
brooksby wrote:

Is this the story where a commenter BTL claims to be a witness, and said that the van moved from left-hand lane to right-hand lane and straight over the cyclist?  Causing injury by careless driving, surely...?

 

So you're not sure if it is the sme incident but happy to accuse the driver of careless driving ? 

 

None of us were there - I think the Police are best to judge the situation. 

There's another article on the Bristol Post: https://www.bristolpost.co.uk/news/bristol-news/meet-hero-who-jumped-mov...

Jonny Lennon wrote:

There were people at the crossing there, and the Deliveroo cyclist was there too, then in my periphery I saw this van coming down the road and I thought ‘he’s not going to stop!'

He didn’t and took the cyclist out head on. How he didn’t see him, I don’t know - he must have done. The cyclist was standing up on his pedals with a bright Deliveroo backpack on and he was knocked down by the van and the bike and him went under the van.

I jumped up and over the wall and the van just kept going. I was running alongside it on the passenger side screaming. I was on London Bridge and I initially thought ‘f*** me, this is a terrorist attack. Up ahead I could see there was a big crowd of people all around the Gromit that’s in front of the Wills Memorial Building, and I thought ‘maybe he’s going for them’. That’s what it looked like.

While I was running, the front wheels went over the kid and the bike - he still didn’t stop.

I grabbed the side door screaming at him to stop. I jumped into the passenger seat and then he looked at me.

I thought ‘he’s going to crash’. I can see all these people ahead, so I held the steering wheel straight to keep the van on the road.

He started hitting me, back-handing me. I started to look for the keys, I couldn’t see where the handbrake was. I looked down at his feet and I put my head down, let go of the steering wheel and dived between his knees.

I pulled his feet back off the pedals. He was on the clutch and the accelerator and I got his feet off and reached back and flicked the gear stick out of gear.

I was thinking ‘this is it’. I sat up and we were wrestling, the van was out of gear and slowing, we were freewheeling, but still moving.

I realised that the handbrake was in a funny place, tucked away next to the seat I was on, and I was sitting on it, so I yanked it back and brought the van to a stop,” he added.

He was still trying to wrestle with me. I kept looking around in the van. The attackers on London Bridge had knives strapped to their arms when they were in the van, and I was looking to see if he had weapons.

I suddenly thought ‘being in this van, this isn’t a very good idea’, so I jumped out and went to see the guy under the van. Some other guys had come up and were at the driver’s door and shouting at him to get out.

I ran to the back and I got down and there was a guy there holding his head and checking him

"No action to be taken" against the driver.

 

Jesus.

I use this bit of road every weekday, come along Queen's Rd in the right hand of 3 lanes (the left is basically a bus stop/taxi rank and turn right to double back around to Jacob Wells Rd - a massive number of drivers go in the right lane to avoid queues and then do a last minute change into the middle to go straight on through these lights where the guy was hit. Wouldn't surprise me if that's what this van driver did and was hence wasn't looking where they were going.

Avatar
burtthebike replied to hawkinspeter | 5 years ago
2 likes
hawkinspeter wrote:

There's another article on the Bristol Post: https://www.bristolpost.co.uk/news/bristol-news/meet-hero-who-jumped-mov...

Jonny Lennon wrote:

There were people at the crossing there, and the Deliveroo cyclist was there too, then in my periphery I saw this van coming down the road and I thought ‘he’s not going to stop!'

He didn’t and took the cyclist out head on. How he didn’t see him, I don’t know - he must have done. The cyclist was standing up on his pedals with a bright Deliveroo backpack on and he was knocked down by the van and the bike and him went under the van.

I jumped up and over the wall and the van just kept going. I was running alongside it on the passenger side screaming. I was on London Bridge and I initially thought ‘f*** me, this is a terrorist attack. Up ahead I could see there was a big crowd of people all around the Gromit that’s in front of the Wills Memorial Building, and I thought ‘maybe he’s going for them’. That’s what it looked like.

While I was running, the front wheels went over the kid and the bike - he still didn’t stop.

I grabbed the side door screaming at him to stop. I jumped into the passenger seat and then he looked at me.

I thought ‘he’s going to crash’. I can see all these people ahead, so I held the steering wheel straight to keep the van on the road.

He started hitting me, back-handing me. I started to look for the keys, I couldn’t see where the handbrake was. I looked down at his feet and I put my head down, let go of the steering wheel and dived between his knees.

I pulled his feet back off the pedals. He was on the clutch and the accelerator and I got his feet off and reached back and flicked the gear stick out of gear.

I was thinking ‘this is it’. I sat up and we were wrestling, the van was out of gear and slowing, we were freewheeling, but still moving.

I realised that the handbrake was in a funny place, tucked away next to the seat I was on, and I was sitting on it, so I yanked it back and brought the van to a stop,” he added.

He was still trying to wrestle with me. I kept looking around in the van. The attackers on London Bridge had knives strapped to their arms when they were in the van, and I was looking to see if he had weapons.

I suddenly thought ‘being in this van, this isn’t a very good idea’, so I jumped out and went to see the guy under the van. Some other guys had come up and were at the driver’s door and shouting at him to get out.

I ran to the back and I got down and there was a guy there holding his head and checking him

"No action to be taken" against the driver.

I just went onto the Post website to check that, as it is rather far-fetched and unlikely, and it is there.  Given that the author, Mr Lennon, would have had to sprint down the steps of the restaurant, leap into to a moving vehicle, then wrestle control from the driver and bring the van to a halt while the driver attacked him, and yet the police have said they are bringing no charges against the driver, he may be a bit of a fantasist.

Avatar
don simon fbpe replied to hawkinspeter | 5 years ago
3 likes
hawkinspeter wrote:

 

There's another article on the Bristol Post: https://www.bristolpost.co.uk/news/bristol-news/meet-hero-who-jumped-mov...

Jonny Lennon wrote:

There were people at the crossing there, and the Deliveroo cyclist was there too, then in my periphery I saw this van coming down the road and I thought ‘he’s not going to stop!'

He didn’t and took the cyclist out head on. How he didn’t see him, I don’t know - he must have done. The cyclist was standing up on his pedals with a bright Deliveroo backpack on and he was knocked down by the van and the bike and him went under the van.

I jumped up and over the wall and the van just kept going. I was running alongside it on the passenger side screaming. I was on London Bridge and I initially thought ‘f*** me, this is a terrorist attack. Up ahead I could see there was a big crowd of people all around the Gromit that’s in front of the Wills Memorial Building, and I thought ‘maybe he’s going for them’. That’s what it looked like.

While I was running, the front wheels went over the kid and the bike - he still didn’t stop.

I grabbed the side door screaming at him to stop. I jumped into the passenger seat and then he looked at me.

I thought ‘he’s going to crash’. I can see all these people ahead, so I held the steering wheel straight to keep the van on the road.

He started hitting me, back-handing me. I started to look for the keys, I couldn’t see where the handbrake was. I looked down at his feet and I put my head down, let go of the steering wheel and dived between his knees.

I pulled his feet back off the pedals. He was on the clutch and the accelerator and I got his feet off and reached back and flicked the gear stick out of gear.

I was thinking ‘this is it’. I sat up and we were wrestling, the van was out of gear and slowing, we were freewheeling, but still moving.

I realised that the handbrake was in a funny place, tucked away next to the seat I was on, and I was sitting on it, so I yanked it back and brought the van to a stop,” he added.

He was still trying to wrestle with me. I kept looking around in the van. The attackers on London Bridge had knives strapped to their arms when they were in the van, and I was looking to see if he had weapons.

I suddenly thought ‘being in this van, this isn’t a very good idea’, so I jumped out and went to see the guy under the van. Some other guys had come up and were at the driver’s door and shouting at him to get out.

I ran to the back and I got down and there was a guy there holding his head and checking him

"No action to be taken" against the driver.

Respect to the lad for that, more balls than me.

Avatar
peted76 | 5 years ago
22 likes

‘I’m a doctor and I’m telling you to fucking move the van back'

Brilliant, lucky rider!

Avatar
burtthebike replied to peted76 | 5 years ago
9 likes
peted76 wrote:

‘I’m a doctor and I’m telling you to fucking move the van back'

Brilliant, lucky rider!

And a great doctor.  Deserves some sort of award, surely?

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