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Heroic van man left in agony

Date online: 25 February 2014

An heroic workman suffered horrific injuries when he was run down by a thief who had just stolen his own van.

The 50 year old jumped on the front of the vehicle and was thrown to the ground - and the back wheels of the Ford Transit ran over his right leg, shattering it in two places.

The Ripponden Road, Denshaw incident stunned residents and resulted in the closure of the busy road.

The drama unfolded near the former Black Horse pub, which is being converted into houses.

Today, as police appealed for witnesses, the injured man was feted for his bravery. Geoff Haigh, owner of the landmark Rams Head a mile away, who was nearby when the incident happened.

He said: “The road was thronged with emergency services. The man was incredibly brave to do what he did — it took real guts.”

The workman was taken to hospital and treated for the double break. He remains in a stable condition.

Police said the road maintenance worker was putting signs in the back of the van when the offender got into the cab and started to drive off.

Det Cons Leigh Carnally, based at Oldham, said: “He was fortunate not to be killed. Clearly the thief was so desperate to steal the van he was determined to harm whoever got in his way.”

Police are urging anyone who has seen the white Gallagher works van, YT62 AVL, to contact them.

Anyone with information is asked to call police on: 0161-856 6386 or Crimestoppers on: 0800 555 111.


Brave or reckless?
What did hope to achieve by jumping on the front of a moving van with nothing to hold on to? In addition if he hadn't left the keys in the ignition the thief wouldn't have been able to drive it off!
As has been said, he was lucky not to have been killed or even more seriously injured, and it's only a piece of metal! It doesn't even belong to him - risking your life in this way simply isn't worth it !

The thief should have his legs broken when caught and not just the usual slap on the wrist .

How did the thief manage to start the vehicle, given the security of modern-day vehicles? One can only assume that the keys were left in the ignition!

Let's hope that this tragic incident will only serve to others to not leave their keys in the ignition of the vehicle!

Totally agree with the second comment. An eye for an eye and all.
Even if the keys were left in it doesn't give anyone the right to do this to a hardworking man. Hope he gets better and the scum are caught.

The stupidity of some of the comments today beggars belief! People who seriously believe that two wrongs make a right and a thief should have serious injuries inflicted on him because he inflicted them on someone else.
Utter insanity ! Goodness knows what goes through the minds of some people!

I agree flake, some comments beggar belief.......taking the side of the scum who stole the van,......yours! Who can say, in that split second, with adrenaline going we wouldn't try to 'save' the works van? I think anyone would without the benefit of hindsight. He was probably worried about getting in trouble for leaving the keys for a split second. I don't think he was a 'hero', but not in the wrong either. I agree it was a mistake, but I'm reading the story, not having my van stolen before me


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