Paralysed doctor sues bike company for £10m after crash

A junior doctor who was left paralysed from the waist down after his new bike broke in half is seeking £10m in compensation. Dr Daniel Gordon, who works as a junior at Inverness’ Raigmore Hospital, claims that the bike was defective and unsuitable for the terrain he was riding on.

The accident that changed his life

Dr Gordon, 30, was taking his first ride on a £2,300 all-terrain gravel bike in August 2020, when he decided to go down a grassy slope in the grounds of the hospital where his girlfriend worked. He was riding at a speed of about 15.5 miles per hour, which he says was well within the capabilities of the bike. However, as he descended, the carbon fibre front forks of the bike suddenly and without warning sheared in two at the base of the steerer tube, causing the front wheel of the bike to collapse rearwards. Dr Gordon was thrown over the handlebars and landed on his chest, breaking his spine and damaging his spinal cord. He was left paralysed from the chest down and had to undergo several surgeries and intensive rehabilitation. He also suffered lung complications and restricted breathing due to the rupture of some veins.

The legal battle for compensation

Dr Gordon is now suing the insurers of Planet X, the company that made and sold him the bike, for £10 million in damages. He alleges that the bike was faulty and had dangerously weak front forks that should not have failed in the circumstances. He also claims that the company did not provide clear and effective instructions or warnings about the bike’s unsuitability for such use. He says that the bike was marketed as a “go-anywhere bike” that was “flowingly fast and comfortably confident” and that it added “the only thing Tempest doesn’t have is limits”. He argues that he relied on these representations when he bought the bike and that he was not aware of any risks or limitations.

Paralysed doctor sues bike company for £10m after crash

He says that the accident has caused him severe physical and psychological injuries, as well as financial losses. He says that his medical career has been affected and that he has lost the opportunity to pursue his hobbies and interests. He also says that he has incurred significant expenses for his care, equipment, accommodation and therapy.

The insurers of Planet X deny liability and say that the bike was appropriately tested and inspected, and that there had been no previous complaints or incidents involving the bike. They say that the bike was not defective and that the accident was caused by Dr Gordon’s negligence or misuse of the bike. They say that he was riding the bike on an unsuitable surface, at an excessive speed, and without due care and attention. They also dispute the amount of damages claimed by Dr Gordon and say that he has failed to mitigate his losses.

The case has not yet reached the court and is expected to be heard next year.

The impact of the accident on Dr Gordon’s life

Despite the devastating consequences of the accident, Dr Gordon has not given up on his life and has shown remarkable resilience and positivity. He has returned to work as a junior doctor at Raigmore Hospital, where he is involved in teaching and research. He has also become a disabled athlete and has competed in several events, including wheelchair racing and hand cycling. He has also participated in charity fundraisers and awareness campaigns for spinal cord injuries. He has received support from his family, friends, colleagues and the wider community, who have praised his courage and determination. He has also maintained a close relationship with his girlfriend, who was with him at the time of the accident and who has stood by him throughout his recovery.

Dr Gordon has said that he wants to share his story to inspire others who are facing similar challenges and to raise awareness of the importance of safety and quality standards for bikes and other products. He has also said that he hopes to achieve justice and accountability for what happened to him and to prevent such accidents from happening to anyone else.

By Ishan Crawford

Prior to the position, Ishan was senior vice president, strategy & development for Cumbernauld-media Company since April 2013. He joined the Company in 2004 and has served in several corporate developments, business development and strategic planning roles for three chief executives. During that time, he helped transform the Company from a traditional U.S. media conglomerate into a global digital subscription service, unified by the journalism and brand of Cumbernauld-media.

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