The motorbike accident – Wednesday 27/11/02
I was walking to Highbury & Islington Station on Holloway Road at around 8:05am and was about to cross Furlong Road when I saw a Scooter on the other side of the road (going towards Archway) collide with a blue car, who was turning (I think right) onto Holloway Road from Furlong Road. The person on the Scooter then flew up in the air (about 3 meters high), the body turned 360 degrees while in the air, carried on turning, and the landed on the head, while the legs were in a horizontal position. I remember thinking the rider must have broken the neck, as the head landed on its side while the rest of the body was in an upright position. The body then slid down the road for another couple of meters. The body was face down while sliding. I think the body must have travelled around 7 meters from the first impact until it finally stopped.
For about 10 seconds nobody approached the body. We were all staring at each other and a couple of people were running for phone boxes to phone for an ambulance. As no one who was near the person seemed to approach it I crossed the road and kneeled next to the person. I asked ‘Are you ok?’ and realised it was a woman. She was conscious. I got down to look at her face, after asking her not to move and there was blood coming out of her mouth. She looked East Asian and seemed to be no older than 25. By then another woman was there, kneeling on the other side, and a man tried to get her helmet off but we thought it would be best no to. The same man managed to get her glasses off so she could lie still more comfortably. I asked her where it was hurting and she pointed to her left hip, at that point I got blood on my trousers, from her hand. She asked me if her scooter was ok, I told her not to worry about it, she would just get a new one, as it wasn’t her fault and I had seen everything. I then asked ‘Where is the man who hit you?’. A blonde woman who was standing near me said she was the one who hit her. She was clearly upset and I felt bad for saying that it hadn’t been the girl’s fault in front of her.
I asked her if she had phoned an ambulance and she said she was having problems getting through, as, possibly, there were a lot of calls from there requesting an ambulance. I stayed there for a few minutes, with my hand on her back, reassuring her that she was fine, that the blood was probably coming from the inside of her mouth, that she must have bitten the inside of her mouth when she fell off, and that, apart from that she was fine, not to worry. A paramedic arrived and started asking her questions, could she move her legs? She tried and she did, which was relief. I then told him what I had seen of the accident. She asked me to get her bag out of her scooter. I looked at the scooter, which was lying on the floor, but couldn’t see a bag or the ignition. I looked around the road for the keys or the ignition, which I thought might have come off. There was a lot of debris around. I went back to her to say I couldn’t find the keys, and she told me that the keys must be in the ignition. I asked someone to help me get the scooter up, a young black boy helped (around 18 years old). We got it up and I had to twist the panelling, as the ignition was hidden by it. I got the keys, got her bag out of the ‘boot’, I left the padlock and some triangular plastic wrappers in there. I thought those wrappers were odd, what were they? I put the bag next to her and also collected her gloves and a scarf from the surrounding area and put them in her bag, together with they key for the scooter.
The woman who had collided with her come over looking very worried and said she was feeling terrible. I told her I thought the girl was going to be ok, she was conscious and her legs were moving. I told the driver I’d give her my name/address for insurance purposes and that I’d be a witness. Another lady gave me a piece of paper and 3 of us (a woman – not the one who also saw actual collision – and a man – who said he was the one who phoned the ambulance) wrote our names down on it and gave it to a policewoman who had just arrived at the scene. I told her what happened, and also told her there was another witness. The other witness was in the car, with the woman’s children (the woman who collided with the scooter had children in the car). I heard one crying really loudly. The policewoman said I could go. Before I went I said good bye to the girl (I never asked her name… I felt very bad about that), pointed to a blonde paramedic woman the girl’s bag next to her, twice, just to make sure and left. The whole event narrated above took about 25 minutes.