A RUGBY player was in a critical condition last night after he was involved in a collision with a police van which was on its way to an emergency on the Isle of Arran.
The incident happened on Saturday night, when, according to Strathclyde Police, the 22-year-old was struck by the vehicle on the main road in Brodick at around 10pm.
The man, Daniel Gallagher, was taken by helicopter to the Southern General Hospital in Glasgow, where his condition was described last night as “critical but stable”.
Mr Gallagher had made the trip to Arran from his home in Peterhead, Aberdeenshire, as part of a rugby squad called the Bucking Broncos.
The team had been participating in the local rugby club’s Easter Sevens Tournament, half a mile from the scene of the accident.
Mr Gallagher plays at Peterhead RFC. Last night, a spokesman for the club said: “The club can confirm that one of our players, Daniel Gallagher, was involved in the incident involving a police van on the Isle of Arran on Saturday night.
“Daniel’s family has travelled to be by his bedside in Glasgow and we would ask that their privacy is respected at this time.”
The spokesman added: “Daniel joined the club about two years ago and has been a valuable addition to the backs. He is popular with his fellow players and is always the life and soul of the party.
“He had travelled to the isle to compete in a sevens competition with some of his fellow players from the club.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Daniel and his family at this time. We would also like to take this opportunity to thank the medical staff and helicopter crew who have taken care of Daniel since the incident.”
Arran RFC also posted a message of support for the injured player on its Facebook page. It said that “our thoughts go out to Daniel Gallagher”.
Arran RFC captain Niall McMaster said he had seen the police van passing through the town just before the accident occurred.
“I was along at the hall getting ready for the [post-tournament] dance. We did see the police van going past through the village with its lights going and its siren on,” he said.
“I didn’t know the guy, he was just part of the travelling team of sevens from Peterhead.
“We were told that he had been airlifted out and that he was in a critical condition.”
Strathclyde Police spokeswoman confirmed that they were now investigating the incident. She said: “The injured man has transferred to the Southern General Hospital, where his condition was described as critical but stable.
“Inquiries are continuing, and as is the normal procedure, an external police force, in this case Central Scotland, will have oversight of the inquiry.”
The spokeswoman added that a report would be submitted to the procurator-fiscal.