Westminster attack survivor launches compensation claim over his injuries

Westminster attack survivor launches compensation claim over his injuries

A survivor of the Westminster terror attack is launching a compensation claim over the injuries he suffered at the hands of Khalid Masood.

Portuguese Francisco Lopes, 26, says he was left with limited use of his left hand after being thrown over the bonnet of the killer's Hyundai vehicle.

He also suffered cuts to his legs and as well as the physical effects he also claims he has mental scars, including panic attacks and agoraphobia, and has been off work since.

Masood's vehicle was hired from rental firm Enterprise and Lopes is seeking to make a claim against the company's insurer, Zurich, for the cost of counselling and rehabilitation treatment.

Lopes, who works in a shop at nearby St Thomas' Hospital, said: "I try to be like I was, which was scared of nothing, but what happened changed me.

"I get scared when I think about what happened and I'm terrified that I could easily have died.

Westminster attack survivor launches compensation claim over his injuries

"I am scared to go outside and I particularly fear busy places. I'm scared of traffic and haven't been on my bike since the attack.

"I just don't feel safe as I'm worried something bad could happen again. My life is completely different and I just want my normal life back."

Five people were killed by Muslim convert Khalid Masood in the March 22 attack that rocked the nation.

He drove his car into people including Mr Lopes on Westminster Bridge before stabbing Pc Keith Palmer inside the grounds of the Palace of Westminster.

Patrick Maguire, a serious injury specialist lawyer from Slater and Gordon, which is representing Mr Lopes, said: "The priority is to ensure that Francisco gets access to the best rehabilitation in order to rebuild his life following this terrible ordeal.

"It is necessary to secure funds to ensure he gets access to this rehabilitation together with reimbursement for his financial losses. We are currently working towards this."

A Zurich spokesman said: "We do provide insurance for Enterprise and have a specialist team looking at how that policy is impacted by the terrible events in Westminster.

"It was a tragic event and presents many complex aspects as far as insurance is concerned. It is therefore far too soon to talk about any specific elements of this."

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