Nova Scotia

Injured cyclist has warning for others after case thrown out on technicality

Besides serious injuries stemming from a cycling crash where she said she was clipped by a truck on a rural road in Antigonish County, N.S., Anne Cameron also recently learned the case against the driver was thrown out due to a technicality.

'For the case to be dismissed is very, very discouraging,' says cyclist who was hit by trailer on road

Anne Cameron riding her bicycle before she was injured. Cameron says she is speaking out about her experience with the court system because she wants other cyclists to be aware if they get into an accident on the road. (Submitted by Jerry MacDonald)

The last eight months have been torturous for Anne Cameron.

Besides serious injuries stemming from a cycling crash where she said she was clipped by a truck on a rural road in Antigonish County, N.S., she also recently learned the case against the driver was thrown out due to a technicality.

"There was no verification or proof that I was on a bicycle based on the prosecution did not ask for pictures of my bike or did not question me about the size of my tires," said Cameron, 57.

One afternoon last August, Cameron decided to ride her bike to the beach. Two-thirds of the way through the 20-kilometre ride from Antigonish to Malignant Cove, she said she was clipped by a trailer being towed by a truck and was knocked off her bike.

Cameron said she had three spine compression fractures, a fractured left-ring finger, a large hematoma on her right buttocks and lots of bruising.

'A lot of road rash'

"I was basically bruised all along my right side, but especially from my calf to my belly button, and a lot of road rash on my left side," said Cameron.

The incident happened in an area with no cell service and Cameron said the truck driver stopped to see if she was all right. He drove her to Malignant Cove and dropped Cameron off to her waiting husband. Cameron's husband then drove her to St. Martha's Hospital in Antigonish, where she is a nurse.

Driver entered not-guilty plea

The RCMP came to the hospital to get her statement and police charged the driver under the Motor Vehicle Act for not leaving enough space between his vehicle and Cameron's bicycle while passing. The law states that motorists must leave at least a metre of space between the vehicle and a cyclist.

The driver later pleaded not guilty.

The road between Antigonish and Malignant Cove where Anne Cameron was hit by a trailer towed by a truck. (Submitted by Jerry MacDonald)

Cameron has undergone extensive physio and hasn't been able to return to work.

She said her case was completely mishandled by the Crown prosecutor.

"She didn't do her job and psychologically it's been really rough," said Cameron. "For him [the accused] to get off and for the case to be dismissed is very, very discouraging."

Cameron is speaking out because she wants other cyclists to be aware if they get into an accident on the road.

Crown response

Chris Hansen, the director of communications for the Nova Scotia Public Prosecution Service, said the Crown won't be appealing the decision.

"Ms. Cameron is welcome to write a letter of complaint to the chief Crown attorney in the Central Region who is located in our Antigonish office," said Hansen.

Cameron said she isn't sure if she'll file a complaint.

"I'm just so fed up with all of this and I almost don't want to talk about it anymore," said Cameron. "I'm at my wit's end and it just brings everything back up, it's been a really hard, hard go."

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