Cycling principal comes a cropper

KIRSTY MCMURRAY
Last updated 09:31 25/09/2012
tdn principal stand
ROBERT CHARLES
Rescue workers carry Puketapu School principal Mike Johnson up a 20m bank after he fell off his bike.

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Students had to ring 111 to rescue their principal after he went flying over his bike's handlebars while riding down a bank yesterday.

Puketapu School principal Mike Johnson was carried up the 20-metre high Wills Rd bank in a combined effort by police, ambulance and fire officers and taken to Taranaki Base Hospital about 4pm with moderate injuries.

Teacher Kerry Hinton said Mr Johnson had been riding his bike behind a group of students who will be representing the school at the Taranaki Primary Schools Cross Country in Hawera tomorrow.

"He was taking the kids for a cross-country run down here along to the beach and he's gone down the bank and come off his bike."

Jay Lane, a teacher aide at the school said one student had run back to the school while others had used a cellphone to ring emergency services.

"It was all well under way by the time we got here."

She said Mr Johnson had been wearing a helmet and it was not unusual for him to bike behind the students along the coast.

New Plymouth senior station officer Ian Drewery said Mr Johnson was "packaged up" before he was hooked up to a rope and hauled up the hill on a stretcher by emergency services.

Bell Block community constable Andrew Wong Too said the students had done the right thing to ring 111.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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