Helmet fines jeopardize Halifax man's car insurance
Skateboarder with clean driving record dropped by company
A 25-year-old Halifax man says he found out the hard way that skateboarding without a helmet can also affect car insurance.
Pat Harland got a call from his auto insurance company — TD Insurance Meloche Monnex — on Thursday. He thought he was going to get a break on his insurance because he hasn't had a claim in his five years with the company.
Instead, TD Insurance Meloche Monnex told Harland they're dropping him as a client.
"I got these tickets because I was skateboarding at the Commons in the designated skateboarding area without a helmet," he told CBC News on Thursday.
In the past three years, Harland has gotten two tickets for not wearing a helmet during skateboarding. He also got a third ticket for not wearing a seatbelt.
A representative with TD Insurance Meloche Monnex told Harland it was the skateboarding that had tipped his case over the edge.
"Any type of violation that goes against the Motor Vehicle Act does take points off of your licence and thus counts against your insurance rating," Harland was told.
"If it affects your motor vehicle report, it does affect your overall insurance as well."
'It's so crazy'
Harland was told he had the option of facility insurance, which is reserved for poor drivers or people who have had DUI convictions.
"He said facility insurance — the only insurance I'm applicable for now — is so expensive that he recommended I go get another policy from another carrier," said Harland.
"I've been ranting about it all day because it's so crazy."
Harland said when it's nice enough to skateboard outside, he'll be back at the Halifax Common — even if it causes him insurance trouble.
"Without the helmet. I may ride it with the helmet, you never know," he said.
"I don't think that's anything for somebody to tell me that I have to do."
The Halifax Regional Police said 226 tickets were issued last year for not wearing a helmet, which includes cyclists and skateboarders. Each ticket comes with a fine of $141.16.