Q. I have a weird situation… My mate lives out in the sticks in a little housing estate. I swung round to see him on my XJR1300 and as I turned into his close my front-end slipped away and I tumbled off. I hit the deck and fractured my elbow. Upon getting up I saw the road was covered in oil. Not engine oil but cooking oil. 

I got loads of photos and a video showing it, and when I spoke to my mate he told me they have a mobile fish and chip van that comes around to the village once a week that had been there the night before. Can I claim against the fish and chip van, or am I stumped?



A. You need to be able to prove on the balance of probabilities that the fish and chip van left the cooking oil on the road. The fact you have photos and video will help and I would find out their details and direct the claim to them. From what you have said it seems likely the cooking oil came from their van so you should be successful.

However, if you cannot prove it on the balance of probabilities, then you should consider making a claim against the Motor Insurers’ Bureau under the untraced driver’s scheme. Every time we all pay motor insurance, some of the money goes in a big pot used to compensate people. In short, if you can prove the oil came from an untraced vehicle that should be insured, you can claim against the MIB.

White Dalton Solicitors is Britain’s most specialist motorcycle law practice. Managing partner Andrew ‘Chef’ Prendergast and his bike riding barristers compile Motor Cycle Monthly’s legal column. www.whitedalton.co.uk

Tony Carter

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