‘I could have died’ - woman left with fractured spine after being hit by car on zebra crossing

Trish Simpson, of Helvellyn Avenue, Lambton, Washington, resting at home after being knocked down on a zebra crossing near Washington Galleries.
Trish Simpson, of Helvellyn Avenue, Lambton, Washington, resting at home after being knocked down on a zebra crossing near Washington Galleries.

A mum was left with a fractured spine after being hit by a car on a zebra crossing.

Trish Simpson was on her way to work at The Galleries, in Washington, when she was hit by a car on a zebra crossing connecting to the shopping centre.

The crossing leading to Washington Galleries where the accident took place. Pic by Fran Brownson.

The crossing leading to Washington Galleries where the accident took place. Pic by Fran Brownson.

The 53-year-old was using the crossing at 11.50am on Saturday, April 1, when a car failed to see her and struck her right side.

The mum-of-three was taken to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Gateshead, where she was diagnosed with a fractured spine.

Now recovering at home in Lambton, Washington , Mrs Simpson hopes to raise awareness of the dangers of using the crossing, which see feels is not clear to drivers.

She said: “I work in the Galleries and I was just using the zebra crossing on my way to work when I was hit by a car.

Trish Simpson, of Helvellyn Avenue, Lambton, Washington, resting at home after being knocked down on a zebra crossing near Washington Galleries.

Trish Simpson, of Helvellyn Avenue, Lambton, Washington, resting at home after being knocked down on a zebra crossing near Washington Galleries.

“The next thing I knew there was a thud and I realised I that I had been hit.

“The driver got out and was so apologetic, his wife even held my hand until the ambulance got there.

“I suffered a fracture to my spine and I am in absolute agony.

Mrs Simpson now faces weeks of rest to recover after her injury and hopes her experience may make people more aware when using it.

She feels large bushes on either side of it may obscure pedestrians from view and hopes that those who manage the crossing may consider a pelican crossing.

She added: “I was off for 14 weeks on the sick prior to it happening and on just returning to work when this happened.

“I just want to make people aware that driver’s can’t always see you using the crossing.

“I could have died.

“It’s an accident waiting to happen and it could have happened to anyone.

“It will make me apprehensive when I go back to work now as I used it every day.”

David McNee, centre manager of the Galleries comments: “We supported emergency services following an incident in the centre’s car park on Saturday.

“We were pleased to learn that the pedestrian involved was released from hospital after checks with no major injuries.

“The safety of our shoppers and staff is our first priority and our health and safety coordinator has inspected the pedestrian crossing to confirm it is appropriately marked to drivers and that its crossing lights are working.

“We also invest in external auditing of the grounds on a regular basis to ensure all safety matters are pinpointed and resolved and will continue to review and make improvements where appropriate.”

A Northumbria Police spokesman said: “At 12.06pm on Saturday, April 1, police received a report that a woman had been hit outside of the Galleries in Washington.

“Paramedics took the woman to hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

“Inquiries are continuing.”