This is my true story of suffering both mental and physical disability since 2009.
In October 2009 while I was driving a bus for a company I was behind a another bus driver who was talking on his mobile phone and as he drove through an intersection he put his left indicator on so I continued to enter the intersection when suddenly the bus in front of me started doing a U turn. I remember feeling the extreme terror and disbelief when I saw this happening and I instinctively turned right in an attempt to make it through the intersection and onto the right turn before the other bus had a chance to complete his U turn.
Suddenly I felt a huge impact on the left side of my bus which rang and shook violently like a bell before coming to a stop with the horn blaring. It took 30 minutes for the horn in my bus to stop sounding and I still feel extreme anxiety whenever I hear a horn sounding in another vehicle. In the mean time I later found out that I had been knocked unconscious most likely after my left knee had impacted violently with the inside of the bus and all I can recall is getting up from my seat and asking if everyone in my bus were ok and I recall a passenger saying to me, “don’t worry about us, what about yourself”.
My passengers were knocked around with some being flown from the left side of my bus to the right side and a couple had head injuries. I recall the other driver of the other bus who did the illegal U turn was very abusive to me after I went to talk to him to ask him why he did that U turn. Of course at the time he was trying to hide the fact that he had been holding and talking illegally on his mobile phone and he probably didn’t even know that I was behind him. I just walked away from him.
It took about 6 weeks but I started noticing that my left knee just did not feel right and it felt as if I were walking on bone in my knee. Also during those 6 weeks, I had been struggling with a very battered, cut and bruised body and uncontrollable bouts of anxiety and deep sobbing and crying.
I reported my sore knee to my doctor and my previous employer however my previous employer was not very sympathetic with my condition and in fact I discovered that my previous employer used lots of “bullying” tactics during my employment with them up to 2012.
It took 3 years of battling with insurance and workcover to finally get my first knee operation in February 2013. Of course by then the damage to my knee and mental health had well and truly been done and in July 2015 after battling with workcover for 14 months, I had to undergo a 2nd knee operation.
In an attempt to take their evil to a whole new level, the insurance company managed to pay a corrupt psychiatrist to say in a report that the 2009 accident had not been the cause of my Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and extreme depression with suicidal Ideation. I have had a team of other psychiatrists and psychologists all verify that the 2009 accident did indeed cause my poor mental health so I still can not believe how insurance managed to have their psychiatrist say otherwise!
I am still suffering from extremely poor mental health and my left knee continues to cause me great grief. I will always be stuck to using a walking stick and occasionally a walking frame for when my back and spine become too sore because of the walking stick.
Workcover are now trying to get me to find new employment because my previous employer managed to dismiss me in March 2012 and I then had to relinquish my licences to drive a bus and carry passengers. Workcover refuse to acknowledge my poor mental health and expect me to return to a new job as if nothing is wrong with me.
My Lawyers, have been my guiding light through all of this and I am hoping that soon, after winning my case against the other driver, I will receive some compensation to help me keep living my life.