‘Supercop’ Pc Diederik Coetzee’s family speak for first time on cycle crash that ‘changed our lives completely’

Pc Diederik Coetzee, with his daughters Lauren, left and Rachel, right, is slowly recovering from his injuries.
Pc Diederik Coetzee, with his daughters Lauren, left and Rachel, right, is slowly recovering from his injuries.

THE daughters of a Mansfield ‘supercop’ seriously injured when he was hit by a car as he was cycling, have spoken for the first time about the incident.

Pc Diederik Coetzee was left with a serious brain injury after the incident on Blidworth Lane, near Rainworth, in November last year.

He is continuing to receive intensive rehabilitation treatment and is making slow, but steady progress.

Before the incident, Pc Coetzee hit the headlines for recording the highest number of arrests in the country - but his daughters Lauren and Rachel say the events 10 months ago have ‘turned the dynamics of our family upside down’ .

Speaking on behalf of the family, they said: “Seeing the changes in our father, from being a man who used to take part in Iron Man events, and who achieved a record amount of arrests in England, to a man who needs 24-hour supervision and specialist rehabilitation has been extremely difficult.

“There isn’t a day that passes when we don’t wonder what life would be like if he had never been hit by that car and suffered a severe brain injury.

“This type of thing doesn’t just affect the victim, it affects their whole family. It has certainly changed our lives completely.”

Now his family are throwing their weight behind a Nottinghamshire Police-led scheme, which will see more than 1,000 ‘Think Bike’ back packs offered to cyclists, as part of a new road safety campaign.

The safety campaign the Coetzee family is backing will see free cycle packs, which will include a high-visibility rucksack and jacket, a multi-tool, bike lock and lights, offered to cyclists in Nottinghamshire. Six cyclists have been killed and another 41 seriously injured on the county’s roads this year. Of all the serious road collisions from 1st January to 30th June, 17 per cent have resulted in the death or serious injury of a pedal cyclist.