Police are investigating whether speed and proper helmet use were factors in the death of a 16-year-old Gatineau boy Tuesday evening.
Just before 6:30 p.m., a teen riding an ATV failed to negotiate a curve and crashed into a tree on St. Antoine Road in Val-des-Monts, said MRC des Collines Const. Martin Fournel.
The boy, who was riding alone at the time of the collision, suffered multiple head injuries, including trauma to his head, Fournel said. He was taken to hospital in Gatineau where he was pronounced dead.
From witness accounts, police “have speed for sure,” said Fournel.
“One of our specialists is doing a check on the bike and the helmet. There’s a possibility that the helmet was not tied,” he said.
In Quebec, riders between the ages of 16 and 18 need to be certified to drive an ATV, said Fournel. Police are investigating to see whether this was the case.
While MRC des Collines has a special unit to monitor speeding, young adult use of vehicles and alcohol in regards to ATVs, Fournel urged parents to ensure their children are properly certified and prepared to ride.
“The machines can be too powerful for youngsters,” he said.
It was a busy night for Quebec police.
A woman is in hospital with life-threatening injuries after the motorcycle she was a passenger on crashed west of Gatineau Tuesday night.
At about 6 p.m., a motorcycle carrying a driver and a passenger lost control while travelling on road 148 near Bristol Mines Road in Bristol.
“The driver lost control in a curve,” said Surete du Quebec Sgt. Claude Denis. “Two persons were ejected and suffered severe injuries.”
The female passenger, about 30 years old, suffered life-threatening injuries and is in critical condition.
The driver, a male about 60 years old, suffered serious injuries but is in stable condition.
Both were transported first to hospital in Shawville, and then transferred to hospital in Hull.
Although police have already ruled out alcohol as a factor, “it is too early to confirm whether speed is a factor,” said Denis.