Ministers have hailed a new Brexit dividend by scrapping ‘insane’ new EU rules that would have required ride-on mowers, golf buggies and mobility scooters to be insured.
A judgment passed by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) would have widened the number of vehicles that require insurance, but Transport Secretary Grant Shapps is to shelve the ‘over the top’ rules.
Officials said introducing the law would have had the knock-on effect of hitting British drivers with a £50 average hike in annual car insurance premiums.
Mr Shapps said: ‘We have always disagreed with this over-the-top law that would only do one thing – hit the pockets of hard-working people up and down the country with an unnecessary hike in their car insurance.
‘We no longer need to implement it. Scrapping this rule will save the country billions of pounds and is part of a new and prosperous future in which we set our own rules and regulations.’
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps is to shelve the ‘over the top’ rules which were described as ‘insane’ by Boris Johnson
The EU rules would have required ride-on mowers, golf buggies and mobility scooters to be insured
Boris Johnson previously called the new rules ‘insane’ and a ‘perfect example of both the over-regulation that has sapped the competitiveness of the EU… and the judicial activism of the ECJ.’
The ‘Vnuk’ motor insurance law was named after Damijan Vnuk, a Slovenian farmworker knocked off his ladder by a trailer attached to a reversing tractor.
Insurers initially refused to pay out because the accident had occurred on private land and involved a farm vehicle. But in 2014, the ECJ ruled the claim should have been covered.
The resulting directive required a wider range of vehicles to be covered, including those previously not requiring insurance, such as golf buggies, mobility scooters and quad bikes.
It also extends to vehicles on private land, which would mean owners of ride-on mowers and golf buggies would have been required to take out insurance.
Implementing the law, which the UK would have had to do had we stayed in the EU, would have cost the British insurance industry nearly £2 billion, with the cost passed on to the public through higher premiums.
The Government said last night it will be introducing primary legislation to overturn the EU rules at the ‘earliest possible opportunity’.
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