A cyclist has been awarded £65,000 after suffering serious injuries when he became entangled in a dog lead.
Anthony Steele, 59, was propelled from his bike when an out-of-control dog darted in front of him, getting the lead caught in his spokes.
The experience has left me with permanent hearing loss, dizziness, headaches, balancing issues and pain in my right shoulder.Anthony Steele
He’s now won a lengthy legal battle against the dog’s owner.
Mr Steele, of Heysham, said: “The last thing I can remember before hitting the ground was seeing a small white dog dart across my path and noticing the thin black lead getting trapped in my wheels.
“I had no idea of the severity of my injuries suffered until I had come round in hospital and my wife, Lynne informed me of the skull fracture.
“The experience has left me with permanent hearing loss, dizziness, headaches, balancing issues and pain in my right shoulder.
“I can’t quite believe that all of this has been caused by someone who could not control their dog or be aware of their surroundings.”
Mr Steele, who has been cycling for more than 20 years, was training for a Coast to Coast cycling event with around 10 others in Heysham in August 2012 when the incident occurred.
His bike became caught up with retractable lead and he fell off, hitting the ground, falling unconscious and fratcuring his skull.
He was off work for seven weeks and required neuro-psychotherapeutic therapy and cognitive rehab.
His specialist injury lawyer, Dianne Yates, a partner at Birchall Blackburn Law in Preston, is urging dog owners to be aware of the dangers of retractable leads. She said: “Retractable leads can be hazardous for cyclists, joggers and children.
“Mr Steele’s injuries could have been averted if the owner was in control.
“Instead, this complete lack of awareness and restraint has had a major impact on Mr Steele’s life.”