British tourist Jake Whitelaw had a fatal accident last week in Siargao, Philippines. The 20-year-old man lost control of the moped he was driving when his helmet came loose and he crashed into a tree. Jake's mourning family was shocked when the hostel Jake had rented the vehicle from asked them to pay for damages. Jake's family claims that he did not have a license, so the hostel should not have rented him a vehicle. Meanwhile, the hostel claims Jake showed a license before renting the vehicle.
The young man had been staying at Lukay Resort hostel for a couple of days before the incident occurred. The hostel rents out vehicles to tourists after checking their license and making them sign a form. According to a spokesperson from the hostel, Jake had shown a valid driving license and signed the forms.
Jake has been driving around on the £6-per-day rental vehicle. On Monday, February 3, Jake's helmet came loose and he lost control of the vehicle while trying to fix it. Unfortunately, the two-wheeler smashed against a tree with large rust nails driven into it. Jake did not survive the crash. Since his death, the police reportedly kept the vehicle in their custody.
After his death, members of the Whitelaw family flew to the Philippines to bring Jake's body back to the United Kingdom. They were shocked when the hostel sent them a message asking them to pay £320 for the vehicle's repairs.
Jake's father, Paul Whitelaw, claims that his son did not have a license, which the hostel claims he had. The hotel also claimed that Jake had been driving under the influence of alcohol. Paul refuted the claims by stating that the police only suspected that Jake was drunk at the time of the crash, but there is no evidence to support it.
After the family threatened legal action against the hostel for giving the unlicensed man a vehicle, they went back on their demand for money. The Sun reported that the hostel's spokesperson apologised for asking the family for money. They claimed that they had been instructed by the police to do so if they wanted the vehicle back.