A GORING sports enthusiast suffered a dislocated ankle and more than 11 fractures to his leg after he was struck by a car in a hit-and-run accident.
Darren Yeates had hoped for a healthy start to 2011 when he began a bike ride to Brighton on the morning after New Year’s Day.
But within minutes of leaving his Gerald Road home, he was faced by the driver of a gold Toyota Avensis pulling in front of him, without indicating, and the two collided at the Heene Road junction in Marine Parade.
Darren said he tried to grip the car to keep himself from falling and banged on it to get the driver to stop, but he sped up, causing Darren to fall and land on his ankle.
After the driver of the Toyota and another car following it drove away without stopping, a kind-hearted couple helped Darren off the road and called an ambulance, as well as Darren’s fiancée, Jane Godfrey.
It took six hours of surgery at Worthing Hospital to fix Darren’s ankle, which had been dislocated, and his leg which was fractured in between 11 and 14 places.
“When I fell to the ground, I was in shock and hadn’t realised I was injured. It was only when I looked down at my ankle and saw it was at a 45 degree ankle that I realised something was wrong.
“It upsets you to think other people can do that. I could have been dying for all the driver knew,” said the father-of-three.
Darren, who works in Guildford and also enjoys paragliding and running, was fitted with a 12cm plate to his ankle, eight screws to support it, and a couple of two-inch stabiliser screws.
He will have to wait a minimum of 12 weeks before his cast is removed and 12 months for the plates to be removed.
After speaking with police, Darren was left disappointed when they told him without the car’s registration plate it would be harder to investigate.
Sergeant Tony Crisp, of the road policing unit, said: “We are still making enquiries about this incident, and although there are no further details of the car, it is quite distinctive in appearance. We hope someone may know of such a vehicle in the area, especially one that may have had some nearside damage since the new year weekend.”
Witnesses should contact police on 0845 6070999, quoting serial 329 of 2 January.