Four young people aged 20 or under died in the early hours of Sunday 27 September 2015 following an accident on the A6201. According to the BBC news report (the headline of which is used above), the quad bike on which the four were riding was involved in a collision with a Nissan sports car, which was carrying two young men aged only 20 and 22.
The accident is unquestionably a tragic loss of four young lives. There are no indications of the circumstances, other than some reports indicating that the bike was hit from behind. It has also been suggested that the bike may have been unregistered.
Liability for the use of vehicles on roads or public places in the UK must be insured. While that legal requirement would apply to the Nissan involved in this recent accident, it would not necessarily extend to the quad bike. If, as has been reported, the bike was unregistered then it might turn out not to be the subject of compulsory insurance.
The insurance position for any motor vehicle – not just those registered for road use – functioning normally and used anywhere on land, is set to change as a result of the Vnuk case which is detailed elsewhere on this blog. In earlier comments we had mentioned quad bikes just as hypothetical examples of the sort of non-road vehicle that might become subject to compulsory insurance after the UK law is changed. The fatal accident on the A6201 last Sunday morning brings that example into a terrible reality.
Written by Alistair Kinley, director of policy & government affairs