The CTC has forced a multi-national insurer to take full responsibility for a crash in which a cyclist was hit by a car. NIG (the National Insurance and Guarantee Corporation) has withdrawn its contributory negligence claim against Walsall cyclist Alan Millett, brought about because Millett was not wearing a helmet when the collision took place.

Insurer backs down after lobbying from CTC

The insurer had admitted liability for the crash but reduced its damages offer by 15 per cent. Now, the pressure the CTC brought to bear has forced NIG to pay the full offer of £130 000 with no deduction.

Millett, 66, suffered serious head injuries, a broken collar bone and severe bruising when he was hit by the car as he cycled around a roundabout on the A41 in Walsall. An appeal for action from CTC prompted members to send hundreds of angry emails and letters to NIG calling for payment of the full award.

Millett’s Solicitor Joseph Rahm said: "This is another significant victory for cyclists. The considerable discontent CTC members showed led NIG to back down very quickly.

"When it comes to protective head gear, insurers know they are on a poor wicket and that there is no proof that the head injury would have been lessened by the wearing of a helmet."

CTC Director Kevin Mayne said: "Winning this case was crucial to the future of cycling. The claim against Alan was scandalous and the award is no more than he deserves."

CTC set up the Cyclists’ Defence Fund after the Coombs case, to fight actions such as these that could set precedents that deter people from cycling.

Last year, the CTC won a similar campaign, making Provident Insurance retract a

claim against young Darren Coombs.

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