Nova Scotia

No charges in ATV accident that killed 5-year-old boy

RCMP say they will not be laying charges related to the death of a five-year-old boy who was pinned under an all-terrain vehicle in Scotch Hill, N.S., on Sunday.

RCMP Cpl. Dal Hutchinson says adults were present, but not clear if child was supervised

Children as young as six can operate all-terrain vehicles in Nova Scotia, assuming they meet certain conditions. (Scott Sommerdorf/The Salt Lake Tribune via AP)

RCMP say they will not be laying charges related to the death of a five-year-old boy who was pinned under an all-terrain vehicle in Scotch Hill, N.S., on Sunday.

The child was riding a youth-model ATV by himself in a residential yard when it rolled over. The boy, who was wearing a helmet, was freed and taken to Aberdeen Regional Hospital in New Glasgow, where he was pronounced dead.

RCMP Cpl. Dal Hutchinson said Monday there were adults present, but it's not clear if they were supervising the child.

Children as young as 6 can operate ATVs 

Children between six and 15 can operate an ATV in Nova Scotia under certain conditions, such as having safety training, being supervised by an adult and driving on a closed course.

"Our hearts are go out to this family and it's definitely a tragic time for them. We feel really sad about this whole event," said Barry Barnet, the executive director of the ATV Association of Nova Scotia.

He said the association doesn't keep statistics about the number of deaths caused by ATVs, but he makes "mental notes" when incidents occur.

Barnet said following proper safety protocol is key.

"Ride in a safe and responsible manner and hopefully these types of incidents will be reduced, if not eliminated over time," he said.

ATV enforcement

ATV usage in Nova Scotia is regulated by the Environment Department. Barnet said the department has enforcement officers who can issue summary offence tickets.

"They do on a routine basis, spot checks, and are actively out there in the woods of Nova Scotia on trails to ensure the rules and regulations are being followed," he said.

Barnet said with thousands of kilometres of trails in the province, enforcement is difficult to carry out. That's why the association would like to see the province hire more enforcement officers.

He also said RCMP and municipal police forces have the authority to ticket people not following the rules.

With files from CBC's Mainstreet and Cassie Williams

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