Witnesses today described how the 27-year-old victim was left with serious head injuries after losing his grip when the black Vauxhall Zafira sped off along Essex Road, in Islington.
He was seen leaning through the car’s passenger-side front window in the early hours yesterday to try and negotiate a fare with the driver after mistaking it for a mini cab, sources told the Standard.
But he was left clinging on after the vehicle sped off, suffering a life-threatening head injury after losing his grip and crashing to the ground. He was rushed by ambulance to an east London hospital where he is critical. Police today confirmed the vehicle was not a cab.
Denise Read, 53, who works at a nearby minicab firm, said: "One of our drivers said the man’s face was in a very bad way."
A 57-year-old male motorist was arrested on suspicion of causing serious injury by dangerous driving and failing to stop at the scene. He has been bailed until January.
The clash took place near the Ockendon Road junction at about 2am yesterday.
Toyris Miah, 23, whose home overlooks the scene outside Essex Road Kebab, said: “I heard shouting but didn’t think anything of it because this is a busy road.
“But then I looked out of the window a bit later because I saw blue flashing lights and there was about 12 medical staff and they had the whole road blocked off.
“I’ve never seen that many medics attend to one person which is why I knew it was serious. It looked pretty horrible.
“You could see that he was completely unconscious and wasn’t moving. They had him on a stretcher and there were all sorts of tubes going inside him with a blood bag going into him and an aid to help him breathe."
Ali Findir, 37, described seeing paramedics frantically trying to pump the victim’s chest after rushing out of the kebab shop where he works.
He said: “I didn’t see the incident but I saw the ambulance and the blue lights when I came out and could just see this guy in the road and they were pumping his chest trying to resuscitate him for quite a long time.”
Other witnesses told how debris which looked like “smashed plastic” could be seen lying in the road while residents were stopped from returning home for up to an hour.
Source Standard online.