December 21 2014 Latest news:
Tuesday, February 4, 2014
A lorry driver who was attacked from behind and knocked unconscious by an enraged cyclist has condemned the perpetrator as a “lunatic”.
Michael Garrett, 48, from south Wales, had just delivered goods to Rose Hygiene Products Ltd when he was driving his lorry up Elm Lane in Copdock yesterday morning.
The father-of-two, who has been a lorry driver for 15 years, never expected he would be hospitalised by the afternoon.
Mr Garrett had delivered to the same site in Copdock many times before, and knew to take his time as he came back up the narrow lane at around 10.15am.
As a car approached him from the opposite direction Mr Garrett stopped and beckoned the car to continue down his right hand side.
It was then that he looked in the mirror and noticed a cyclist coming up behind and about to overtake the lorry.
“I shoved my arm out of the window and shouted to him, ‘Stop! Stop!’” Mr Garrett said.
“He comes up on the bike and says I can’t hear you, I’ve got my headphones in. Then he started effing and blinding and saying you shouldn’t be in this lane.
“I got out and said to him, ‘If you take them stupid bloody ear phones out of your ears you’d be able to hear what’s going on.” And he confronts me with his chest out so I turned around and walked away from him and the next thing I know I wake up on the floor and the chap from the car was asking if I was OK.”
As Mr Garrett had been returning to the cab the cyclist had come up behind him and smashed his head with the lorry door before riding off.
Mr Garrett lost consciousness for between 10 and 20 seconds. He carried on his journey but started to feel unwell and was taken to Ipswich Hospital where he was treated for concussion and had X-rays taken of his spine.
Having undergone spinal surgery in the past doctors were concerned about Mr Garrett’s injuries. However he was discharged yesterday evening and spent last night in an Ipswich hotel as he was unable to drive home.
“You don’t expect to be confronted by a lunatic on the street to be honest,” said Mr Garrett. “I have had my little altercations in the past but growing up now you think you wouldn’t have to put up with something like that.
“I think he should be sent to anger management classes because at the end of the day I was trying to stop him from getting injured. It’s a bit daunting because I have always been a physical and strong person all my life and to have someone come up behind you is quite cowardly.
“Every day, as any lorry driver will tell you, there are cars cutting you up and pulling in front of you and breaking so you flash your light at them and wag your finger and then you just carry on with your working day. We come across it all so often.
“I’m not saying I’m perfect but I’ve always worked all my life and I like to think I’m pretty respectable and then you go out to earn your bread and you don’t expect to end up in hospital.”
Police have spoken to a witness but would like the cyclist to come forward or to speak to anybody who saw or recognises him from the description.
He is described as a white male, of stocky build aged in his late 30s to early 40s, he was between 5’8” and 5’10” tall and wore a light or white top, a cycle helmet, sunglasses, white headphones and cycling attire.
If you have any information in relation to this incident or recognise the man from the description you are asked to call PC Darren Dawson at Suffolk Police Headquarters Roads Policing and Firearms Operations Unit on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.