A WOMAN has been left in agony after suffering a shattered kneecap which could lead to lifelong mobility issues after falling on a small wooden bridge in Chalkwell Park.

The woman, 50, has called on Southend Council to take urgent action and treat the wood on the bridge after claiming she is “not the first” to be injured.

Southend Council has insisted council officers are looking into the issue after the woman, who asked not to be named, submitted a complaint.

The woman was left writhing in pain in the park after the fall and has been told she could need a kneecap replacement or rely on the use of crutches or a walker for the rest of her life.

Speaking to the Echo the woman, who asked not be named, said: “I was screaming and on the floor, I remember I heard someone say that it has happened before. I was treated by paramedics who thought I had dislocated my knee.

“It will have long term and potentially permanent effect on my ability to walk”

The woman has now contacted her ward councillors, included James Courtenay, to demand urgent safety improvements.

She added: “In the winter, the deck boards are covered with sludge due to being next to a little pond.

“My heel slid straight down, and my thighbone hit my kneecap and shattered it, it may regain function, or I may need a kneecap replacement, I’ve heard others saying people have been hurt before at the bridge. I was treated by paramedics at the scene for an impacted fracture of the thigh and I got in contact with the council to call for it to be reported.

Mr Courtenay said: “I am very sorry to hear about what happened and it has been put to council officers for further action.

“If there need to be repairs made, that bridge has been there for quite a while, so it is a possibility.”

A spokesperson for Southend Council said: “We are sorry to hear about this incident and our thoughts are with the lady concerned.

“Safety is of paramount importance and officers are aware and looking into the circumstances surrounding this incident.”