Payout for yoga teacher hit by cyclist as she crossed road... on her phone

Tristan Kirk
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Payout for yoga teacher hit by cyclist as she crossed road... on her phone

A yoga teacher knocked unconscious by a cyclist when she stepped into the road while looking at her phone has won compensation, despite a judge ruling the crash was partly her fault.

Gemma Brushett, 28, was crossing a junction in London Bridge when she was hit by Robert Hazeldean’s bike, knocking her out and leaving her with a minor head injury.

She was staring at her mobile phone as she stepped into the road, Central London county court heard, and did not see the cyclist until the last minute when he sounded an airhorn.

Ms Brushett, who works for a City finance company, “panicked” and tried to retreat to a traffic island but Mr Hazeldean swerved in the same direction and hit her.

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Gemma Brushett pictured outside London's High Court (Champion News)

Judge Shanti Mauger accepted that Mr Hazeldean, a garden designer, is a “calm and reasonable road user” and rejected claims that he had been cycling aggressively or was “reckless” when the crash happened on July 20, 2015.

But she ruled that even though Ms Brushett, from Kent, was using her phone while crossing the road and must accept 50 per cent of the blame, Mr Hazeldean should also pay thousands of pound in compensation.

“Mr Hazeldean fell below the level expected of a reasonably competent cyclist in that he proceeded when the road was not completely clear,” she said.

Robert Hazeldean outside London's High Court (Champion News)

She ruled that Ms Brushett “must clearly have equal responsibility if she is crossing the road without looking” but added: “Cyclists must be prepared at all times for people to behave in unexpected ways.”

The court heard Mr Hazeldean, who now lives in southern France, was also knocked unconscious and suffered cuts and bruises in the crash at the junction of King William Street and Cannon Street.

Three pedestrians told police Ms Brushett was “not looking where she was going” and that “the cyclist was not at fault”.

The case will return to court at a later date for the amount of compensation to be decided.