Call to consider dangers of scramblers after incident

An appeal has been made for young people to think about the possible consequences of their actions following the latest incident involving a scrambler.

General views of Mossley pitches where a nine-year-old boy was struck by a mototrcycle on Monday night at about 8.45pm.
General views of Mossley pitches where a nine-year-old boy was struck by a mototrcycle on Monday night at about 8.45pm.

The victim, a nine-year-old boy, was hospitalised after being struck by a scrambler motorbike at Mossley Pavilion, Newtownabbey, on Monday evening – just hours after MLAs at Stormont had debated a review of the laws around the vehicles.

The boy in a stable condition at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children on Tuesday.

UUP Newtownabbey councillor Mark Cosgrove issued a statement on Tuesday, in which he said: “I would appeal to people to think about what they are doing because there have been far too many tragic accidents already.”

He said the PSNI should be given the resources necessary to deal “robustly” with such incidents.

Monday’s Assembly motion had been sponsored by Sinn Fein MLA Declan Kearney, and followed the death of Valerie Armstrong in July.

The mother-of-three, aged 35, died after she was hit by a scrambler in a forest park in west Belfast.

Speaking on Tuesday, Mr Kearney said his party was calling for an “effective public awareness campaign” highlighting the dangers of quads and scramblers in the lead-up to Christmas.

He said: “The use of scramblers and quads on public roads, footpaths and public spaces such as parkland is illegal. Everyone should understand the law on scramblers and quads before they are bought as gifts for children.”

Speaking during the debate on Monday, DUP MLA George Robinson had said: “To ensure that the legal framework is fit for purpose, a review into the current legislation would be helpful, possibly to identify areas where the law needs to be changed.

“I would support such a review because the law needs to be fit for purpose. The law also has to be enforceable.”

A police investigation into Monday’s incident is ongoing and officers are following a definite line of enquiry in relation to the identity of the scrambler rider.