How often do we see mobility scooters on the pavements?
Far too often, and for many pedestrians they are a menace.
Sadly some owners buy these machines with little knowledge of what’s expected of them.
Scooters fall into two categories, class two and class three. A class two should not have a capability to exceed 4mph and should be used only on the pavement. A class three can be used on the road but must have a maximum speed of 8mph (four on the pavement) and, in addition, it should be registered with the DVLA and display a nil value Tax Disc. Insurance is recommended but not compulsory – and that is where I have a problem.
Just recently a 50 Plus member had a bad experience involving one of these infernal machines.
Walking along, minding her own, as you do, suddenly she was attacked from behind by the Lone Ranger on his mighty four-wheeled steed. Result: one severely broken ankle, leg in plaster, weeks of pain, unable to walk and numerous visits to the physio.
The hospital tells her she should be OK for Christmas. Hooray! Christmas pudding without the crutches.
Now it gets interesting. The Lone Ranger has no insurance and he claims he couldn’t stop so the accident was unavoidable. No, it was very avoidable.
If he can’t control the machine he should not be riding anywhere other than in his own backyard. What kind of idiot takes these scooters out with no formal instruction, no insurance and no regard for others?
In fairness, not all scooter operators belong to the ranks of the Lone Ranger, but they are for the most part tarred with the same brush. It is unfair on them but what’s to be done?
For a start no retailer of scooters should allow them out of the shop until they are satisfied the buyer actually knows what they are doing, and that should include a practical demonstration of their skills by the purchaser.
Insurance should be compulsory for all types and not an option.
And how often do we see little Mary riding shotgun with granny or grandad? What in heaven’s name are these people thinking? Not unusual for little Mary to be seen driving the carriage – don’t do it, it is totally unacceptable.
I fully understand that these scooters provide freedom and independence to many responsible owners but irresponsible owners need to think about the consequences of their often careless and reckless behaviour.
Oh yes just to remind you, on the road, the Highway Code applies.
Parking? The normal regulations apply to scooters and powered wheelchairs.
When parking, don’t hinder pedestrians, other scooter or wheelchair users or pushchairs. Respect other people’s rights.