Cyclists who rode Velo Birmingham earlier this month have complained there were no warnings ahead of one ‘deathtrap’ descent featuring speedbumps. At least four riders were hurt on Parsons Hill in Kings Norton where one spectator took to standing and shouting warnings to riders.
The descent is a couple of hundred metres at about 8% with the speed bumps towards the bottom.
Birmingham Live reports that Robert Wright, 72, suffered two broken ribs, a fractured shoulder and collarbone and other cuts and scrapes after coming off his bike at the spot.
“I have no idea what happened,” he said. “I’ve been cycling for 64 years and I’m very experienced.
“The collar bone will take the most time to heal. I’m in shock and a bit of pain. I can’t remember seeing any warning at all about bumps.”
Another to fall victim was Derek Packham, who said: “The cause of my accident was that I hit a speed bump and lost control of my front wheel. I didn't see the speed bump due to there being too many other cyclists on the road.
“I suffered quite severe road rash on my knee, thigh, arm, hand and shoulder. I also suffered strained upper back muscles. I was treated at the side of the road by a doctor, who advised me that she was directed there due to the amount of accidents at that location.
“They knew it was an accident hotspot, it should have been neutralised. Whilst being treated another guy came off and I saw another sitting on the verge, clearly in distress having also fallen.”
Kam Majevadia echoed Packham’s comments about the lack of warning that there were speedbumps.
“I was riding behind a couple of others and didn't see them. They moved at the last minute to avoid them and I went straight over them.
“I somehow managed to stay on my bike. It was more luck than skill. I noticed a couple of people on the side who had crashed. I ended up taking the hill very slowly after that.”
Another cyclist, Julian Hunter, suffered damaged ligaments in his right clavicle and abrasions after crashing on Parsons Hill.
The wife of another claimed on social media that he had suffered bleeding on the brain and torn neck arteries, plus a broken collarbone, breast bone and ribs at the location. West Midlands Ambulance confirmed they had attended the scene.
Della Waterfield, who had come to watch the event nearby said: “While the ambulance was still on scene for one man, another came flying off his bike. He hit the speed bump, flew off his bike and skidded 50ft on his back across the road.
“I stood in the middle of the road shouting to the riders to watch the speed bumps because it was too dangerous and you couldn’t see them.
“Parsons Hill was a death trap. I’m not sure why the organisers decided to take the event down a road that was full of speed bumps that were not clearly visible. It was very scary.”
Another spectator, Wendy Badger, said she saw at least four cyclists come off.
“As far as I can make out, they all came off at the speed bumps or just after,” she said. “It was like a battlefield. We were getting short of medics. It was really horrible.
“A doctor at Queen Elizabeth hospital said they'd had 13 people brought in just from Parsons Hill and they still kept letting the cyclists come down at speed for hours.”
The organisers of Vélo Birmingham & Midlands declined to comment.