In Economical Mutual Insurance v. Caughty, the Ontario Court of Appeal considered whether a person who tripped over a parked motorcycle was entitled to statutory accident benefits (SABS).
Mr. Caughty was camping with his family and parked his trailer at a campsite. There was a gap between the trailer and other trailers which people used as a walkway in the campground. Other campers later parked their vehicles in that gap without Mr.Caughty’s knowledge.
While Mr. Caughty was playing tag with his daughter, he tripped over one of the motorcycles that was parked in the walkway and fell. Mr. Caughty sustained serious spinal injuries in the fall. He later applied for accident benefits but his insurer denied the claim on the basis that he was not injured in a motor vehicle accident as defined in the SABS. The judge in this case found that the parking of the motorcycle on the walkway constituted an ordinary and well-known use of the vehicle and the incident was therefore a motor vehicle accident within the meaning of the SABS. The Court of Appeal later upheld the judge’s decision.
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