Four cyclists have been hospitalised in Australia, one of them in a critical condition, following a crash caused when they hit the carcass of a dead kangaroo while riding near Shepparton, Victoria.
Two of the cyclists sustained serious fractures in the crash, which happened early this morning, reports 9 News, with another in a critical condition due to chest injuries suffered when he became trapped beneath a passing vehicle.
The four cyclists who were injured were among nine riders from Shepparton Pussy Cats who were riding in single file when one saw the dead animal and swerved to avoid it.
Some of the riders behind were unable to avoid hitting the dead kangaroo, however, several coming off their bikes and one, David Paton, aged 45, thrown from his bike and becoming trapped underneath a pick-up truck being driven in the opposite direction.
Emergency services used airbags to raise the vehicle and free the cyclist, who sustained chest injuries and was airlifted to Melbourne’s Alfred Hospital where he is in a critical but stable condition.
The driver of the pick-up truck was reported to be in shock and was helping police with their investigation.
According to 9 News, it is believed that the kangaroo had been struck by a driver early this morning, with low sunlight a contributory factor.
In June last year, six cyclists in Florida were injured when one skidded on the remains of a dead alligator that had been hit by a vehicle.
The incident left one, Tim Nicholls, fighting for his life in hospital with injuries including multiple fractures to his face, five broken ribs, a collapsed lung and a broken clavicle. He also suffered bleeding to his brain.
Speaking to the Sun Sentinel three weeks later as he continued his recuperation at home, he said he had no recollection of the incident.
Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.