Four cyclists left battered and bruised after driver failed to see them

A man who drove straight into the path of a group of cyclists will get a chance to say sorry to them at a restorative ...
Charlotte Curd/Fairfax NZ

A man who drove straight into the path of a group of cyclists will get a chance to say sorry to them at a restorative justice meeting.

An evening ride on a sunny, spring day turned into absolute carnage for a group of cyclists thanks to the carelessness of a young driver.

Of the four men injured, the most serious spent two weeks in hospital and needed surgery to fix a serious fracture to his leg.

On November 28, the group was cycling along De Havilland Dr in the New Plymouth suburb of Bell Block as part of a training ride and were travelling at a speed of 40kmh.

At the same, Joshua Clive Michael Avery was driving west on the same stretch of road on his way to work.  

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About 5.45pm, Avery spotted a car park.  He stopped his car and reversed into an access road.  He then drove directly across the road towards the empty parking spot.

But as he did so, the 21-year-old failed to see the cyclists and his car crossed directly into their path.

His car blocked the lane the cyclists were in and the group had no time to stop or avoid Avery's ute.

The man who suffered the most went flying over the bonnet and landed on the road, on the other side of the vehicle.

He was taken to hospital in a serious condition and was found to have suffered a fracture to his left femur which needed surgery.  

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He also suffered a broken right wrist and extensive tendon damage which also required an operation.

All up, the man spent two weeks in hospital recovering.

As a result of the crash, his specialised racing bike, which was valued at $5000, snapped and was not able to be used again. His cycling gear had to be cut off him and his helmet was also damaged.

The second male victim hit the road heavily after he slammed into the ute.  He suffered a concussion and damage to his wrist, which required him to be in plaster for four weeks.  Several of his ribs were also bruised.

The third cyclist crashed directly into the cab of the ute and fell onto the road. Due to the deep bruising to his right shoulder he required physiotherapy and he also suffered cuts and bruises.

He spent some time in hospital and had to miss one day off work. The man's carbon fibre racing bike suffered a buckled front wheel and a broken brake and gear lever.

The fourth cyclist involved in the bike pile-up crashed into the other riders before he hit the ute  and then the ground. He suffered heavy bruising along with cuts to his right hip and pelvis.

When spoken to by police officers at the scene, Avery said he had crossed the road without looking.

On Wednesday, he pleaded guilty to four charges of careless driving causing injury during his brief appearance in court.

Lawyer Josie Mooney asked for a referral to be made to restorative justice to give Avery a chance to meet with the cyclists he injured.

It is was move which was fully endorsed by police prosecutor Sergeant Lewis Sutton.

Community magistrate Sherida Cooper remanded Avery to reappear in the New Plymouth District Court on March 29.

 - Stuff

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