Posted Tuesday 24th April 2012 –
We’ve just had this update in from the organisers of the Exmoor Beauty sportive that took place last weekend, it’s always sad to hear news of a rider being injured and we wish him all the best for a speedy recovery. The organisers are also trying to track down details of the driver of the vehicle, it wasn’t a hit a run but both the organisers and the injured rider are keen to know that the driver is okay. If you have any details then please get in contact with the event organisers.
The extensive safety measures, put in place by the organisers of a leisure cycling event, in the Exmoor National Park yesterday, were brought into sharp focus when one of the participants was in collision with an oncoming vehicle. The 61 year old rider, who was local to the area, lost control of his bike on a steep descent, fell and slid under the front of a car. Following an earlier detailed risk assessment, one of two medical technicians crews, engaged by the Exmoor Beauty Cycle Challenge, had been instructed to station themselves at the point where riders started their final run back to the coast. Deciding to follow the rider downhill, the crew were on the scene of the accident within seconds and, aided by a doctor who was also taking part in the ride, the injured cyclist’s injuries were diagnosed as life threatening. The crew immediately summoned up the emergency services and arrangements were quickly made for the Devon Air Ambulance to attend. Within 20 minutes, the injured rider was being transported to Frenchhay Hospital, where his condition is described as critical.
The speed of the response, to this incident, owes much to the organiser’s stipulation that all key personnel, assisting with the logistics of the event, be equipped with satellite communications, which could supply the landing coordinates, should a helicopter be needed.. With mobile phone signals not being available in many parts of the moor, the high-tech option was a vital part of the event’s risk assessment. In an effort to prevent any mishaps, the assessment had also found it essential to fix high visibility caution and slow signs along those sections of the route where extra care needed to be exercised. Signs were also posted cautioning other road users that the event was in progress. In changeable and sometimes arduous weather conditions, over 600 riders completed the 70 mile challenge without incident. The thoughts of the event’s organisers, and everybody who took part, are with the injured rider and his family, with all hoping for a full and speedy recovery.