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Passers-by lift car off stricken cyclist

Woman had been trapped under vehicle following collision

Passers-by including drivers from a nearby cab firm teamed up to lift a car off a female cyclist after she became trapped underneath it following a collision in London’s Spitalfields on Monday evening.

The 10 bystanders lifted the vehicle and put it onto its side to free 27-year-old Claire Pepper, reports the Docklands & East London Advertiser.

That meant that paramedics did not have to wait for the arrival of the fire brigade to start treatment.

The incident took place at around 8.30pm at the junction of Commercial Street and Hanbury Street.

London Ambulance Service duty officer Nick Osborne commented: “The patient was trapped under a car but around 10 bystanders lifted the car off the patient and rolled it on its side.

“The patient was very unwell and by moving the car our medics could get immediate access to her.

“We called London Fire Brigade who arrived to make the car safe.”

Ms Pepper, who had been riding her bike home to South London, received treatment at the site of the incident for a head injury. She was subsequently taken to the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel.

Speaking today from the hospital, the fashion photographer told the newspaper:
“I’m in a bit of pain as the pain killers have worn off. I have a broken collarbone and some bruises but I feel pretty lucky.

“I don’t have any recollection of the accident at all.”

The incident left her concussed and she said that she believed that the new cycle helmet she was wearing for the first time had saved her life.

“Its the first time I have worn it. I just bought it on a whim and I was thinking I should have asked for it for Christmas but I’m glad I did buy it.”

Her boyfriend, Jonathan Gales, agreed: “It definitely saved her life. It was a brand new helmet and it was absolutely smashed, her head was stuck under the car.”

Ms Pepper added that she was “super grateful” to the Good Samaritans who had come to her aid.

Simon has been news editor at 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.

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