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Scrambler warning for parents as crash boy (15) fights for life

By Christopher Woodhouse

Parents have been warned about the dangers of scrambler bikes as a teenager fights for his life following a crash in west Belfast.

The 15-year-old crashed as he and a friend were riding scrambler motorcycles along the Glen Road at around 5.40pm on Sunday.

The injured boy was in a critical condition in the Royal Victoria Hospital before being moved to the Ulster Hospital in Dundonald yesterday evening.

Police described the boy's injuries as "very serious".

A 16-year-old boy has been arrested following the incident and released on police bail pending further inquiries.

It is understood the injured boy was riding his scrambler on the Glen Road when he hit a traffic island and rebounded into a wall.

Following the smash, Sinn Fein MLA Rosie McCorley warned of the dangers of using scrambler bikes in public spaces.

"The accident last night involving a number of scrambling bikes has left a young man critically ill in hospital," the West Belfast Assembly member said.

"It is a shame that we are now in this situation highlighting once again the dangers of the use of these bikes in public spaces.

"Young people should not be using these bikes on our streets.

"There are issues with insurance, licensing and public safety. We can only be thankful that this young man or others were not killed in this instance.

"I would urge parents who buy these bikes for their children to ensure that they are used responsibly.

"Such actions could help avoid the situation yesterday on the Glen Road."

She added: "Unfortunately there are issue across Belfast with the use of scramblers which need addressed. I will be in contact with the PSNI to ensure that a more robust approach is taken to tackling the use of these bike in our communities."

Following the crash, the police also made a renewed warning about the dangers of riding scramblers on the road.

"Police would always advise the community of the dangers associated with the use of off-road scramblers and quad bikes in public," they said.

"These vehicles are dangerous, they are not toys. People involved in using scramblers should be very mindful of their safety and parents of children that are using these vehicles should ensure that they are suitably equipped for them."

They added: "No one wants to be dealing with serious injuries, or worse, in their family."

Officers investigating the crash asked anyone with information to contact them on the non-emergency number 101.

In 2012, 12-year-old Daniel Mooney was killed after the scrambler he was a passenger on crashed in north Belfast.

He was riding pillion on the bike when it collided with another scrambler, throwing Daniel into the air.

The Hazelwood College pupil was not wearing a helmet and sustained serious head injuries from which he died a short time later.

Belfast Telegraph


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