OPINION: Coward doesn’t begin to cover it for hit-and-run driver

Hit-and-run victim Kyle Johnson, right, with his father, Colin, at Northern General Hospital
Hit-and-run victim Kyle Johnson, right, with his father, Colin, at Northern General Hospital
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Search your conscience and hand yourself in.

That is the message the father of a hit-and-run victim who was left lying in a Sheffield road with broken bones has sent to the driver who ploughed into his son’s bicycle.

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Sheffield cyclist left for dead after hit-and-run

The fact this driver saw 21-year-old Kyle Johnson and his bike hurled over the bonnet and roof of his car and still chose to speed off is simply unbelievable.

Kyle lay in the road with a broken leg and shoulder, but the man or woman responsible decided to abandon him.

It’s a thoroughly despicable and shameful act, and the word ‘coward’ used by Kyle to describe the culprit doesn’t begin to do justice to it.

The fact is, accidents do sometimes happen, and we can only assume the driver had no intention of hitting Kyle.

But, in the moment they saw Kyle lying in the road in pain and hit the accelerator instead of rushing to his aid, it became a heartless act.

If you are that driver, or you know who they are, it isn’t too late to do the right thing, for the sake of the young man who has been through a traumatic ordeal and is still lying in a Northern General Hospital bed with a titanium rod in his femur.

Someone out there may know this person.

A neighbour may have spotted a damaged car parking up next door on January 7, the day of the incident – which happened on Forge Lane, Oughtibridge.

At a time when Sheffield Council and health experts are trying to do their utmost to improve the safety and uptake of cycling, it’s important that everything is done to encourage more people to get on their bikes – and incidents like this only do the opposite.

There is no doubt more needs to be done in Sheffield to make cycling a safer option. More dedicated cycle lanes and routes would be a great start.

But there still needs to be more awareness among drivers. Too often, drivers hurtle past cyclists too closely and at too great a speed, one split second away from a horrible accident.

We all need to remember to do our bit to give cyclists more time and space on the roads, even while we’re zooming from A to B in the middle of rush hour chaos.

In the wake of the successful visit of the Tour de France in 2014, cycling is becoming more popular in Sheffield – but incidents like this simply cannot be allowed to happen if that is to continue.

If you know something, anything at all, call police on 101.