Earns Lowes

Owners of ride-on lawnmowers could soon have to pay around £100 a year for motor insurance, under new regulations being considered by the EU.

Even if your lawn-keeping wheels never leave the confines of your garden, you could face having to take out compulsory cover. This is being mulled over after a Slovenian man was hurt after being knocked off a ladder by a reversing tractor.

Insurers in that case refused to cover claims as the accident took place on private land.

Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin has already indicated that he would oppose any such change in the law.

The Telegraph reports a source close to him as saying: "People have the right to expect to be able to cut the grass on private property without being clobbered for it.

"We have home insurance in place for these kind of things and it works fine. Once we have seen the ruling we'll take whatever action necessary to head off anything that hurts people's personal finances."

EU officials have argued that motor insurance should be used to cover all instances of vehicle use, and not just on roads and other public areas. Currently, accidents are normally taken care off by way of the owner's home insurance policy, though a change in regulations could see annual cover cost around £100 in premiums.

Injuries involving ride-on mowers are not uncommon. Just last year a worker on the Queen's Sandringham Estate was airlifted to hospital after being pinned underwater when a lawnmower toppled onto him. Despite suffering serious injuries, the man later made a full recovery.