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Witness appeal to help find hit-and-run driver

By This is Exeter  |  Posted: October 12, 2009

ANGRY: Cyclist Alix Hayward was injured in a rush-hour road-rage attackGARETH WILLIAMS EE081009_GW07_07

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A HIT-and-run victim claims he could have been killed after being deliberately run over in a road-rage attack.

Cyclist Alix Hayward was flung from his bicycle when a car ploughed into the back of him in rush-hour traffic.

The 22-year-old struggled to avoid being hit as his bike was dragged under the car during the incident on Alphington Road, Exeter.

Alix claims an altercation with the driver a short time earlier had led the motorist to follow him before deliberately driving into the back of his bike.

Police are now investigating the incident and are trawling through CCTV to look for the man responsible.

Alix, who was cycling from his job at Big Wheels Services, Marsh Barton, towards St Thomas train station when the incident happened, said: "I was stopped at traffic lights and I barely had the chance to move off again when the car accelerated and smacked into the back of me.

"I went flying off my bike, which went underneath his car.

"I was left in the middle of the road — I could have been run over or dragged underneath the car as well.

"I looked up and the car which hit me had driven off. My bike has been totally wrecked."

Alix believes road rage led to the motorist to drive into him.

"I was cycling through Marsh Barton and was right in the gutter so cars could pass me.

"But this bloke started shouting at me out of his window and was beeping his horn and flashing his lights," he said.

"I asked him what his problem was and he just wound his window up. But he started trailing me down Alphington Road — he was no more than a foot behind me and was flashing his lights."

Alix, of Hamilton Lane, Exmouth, added: "I have had to have my right hand strapped up as a result of what happened and there is some damage to my back.

"I am extremely lucky not to have been more seriously injured or even killed in the incident. I think the man was trying to scare me because of the words we exchanged earlier, but he used his car as a weapon and succeeded in both scaring and hurting me. The whole incident has left me very nervous on the roads, even as a passenger in a car."

Police have appealed for witnesses to contact them.

The car involved in the incident, which happened at around 6.10pm on Tuesday, is described as a silver Chrysler Voyager people carrier.

The driver is described as aged between 55 and 60 years old.

A spokesman for Devon and Cornwall police said: "Police are investigating this incident and will be looking through CCTV footage of the area.

"We are keen to speak to the motorist in the incident and would also appeal to any witnesses to contact us."

Anyone who saw the incident or who has any information is asked to contact police on 08452 777444 quoting log 736 of October 6.

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