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Mobility scooters are now very common and accidents happen.
I have witnessed an elderly lady loosing control and crashing into a bus shelter, also I had to jump out of the way of another on a narrow pavement as he would not give way or slow down.
My elderly mother uses one of these, obtained by mail order with only the instructions on how it works. Surely there ought to be some sort of basic training and a proficiency certificate, (remember cycling proficiency?) anyone can buy these things and as it is mostly the elderly they may well not always be capable of using them sensibly.
An hour or so training in a car park would be a sensible idea.
But the same applies to bicycles, do kids still take the cycling proficiency test?
I know my school insisted you took it, if you owned a bicycle. But judging by the riding ability of kids and adults in our area, they have had no training.
Riding on the pavements, even on quiet roads. And when they do venture onto the roads, they don't have a clue what to do.
That's without mentioning riding at night with no lights, or reflectors, pillocks.
Mind you a lot of car drivers are no better. I presume they had some training (one would hope!), but still they park on the pavement, even when the road is wide and well lit.
4x4's seem the worst culprits and often completely cover the pavement, forcing you to either walk out in the road, or onto the grass verg.
Not that I knock their wing mirrors off, as I go past if I'm in a bad mood.....
We used to have an old lady who went to see her son in an adjoinging village each sunday, down the main road in the middle holding up traffic. She never, ever got there because the battery would run out.
Even though we told her that her son had moved to Canada some years ago she still carried on every sunday, even with a prohibition order.
Ahhhh, those were the days they were...
Most reputable dealers will carry out a basic competency check, and also ensure that the right type of scooter is being supplied to meet the disabled person's needs. They also check that there is secure space to keep it and there are safe charging facilities.
We have had seven or eight scooters from two different dealers, and though they know we are experienced scooter users, and we have tried them in the showroom, they always insist on us doing a run round the block.
The trouble is that as in so many other fields the cowboys have seen the chance to make a quick buck, and moved in to the detriment of the responsible dealers, and their customers, who get tarred with the same brush.
Dealers should be registered and licensed, as well as users.
It's surprising that someone who is considered not able to drive a car can use an 8 mph scooter on the highway (and on the pavement too if they're not aware of the restrictions).
My Wife has a job looking after an old ladies accounts and as a favour she takes Her shopping etc. A few weeks ago they went to M&S and they supply these things free to old people to go round the shop, In Gets the lady and launches it into a display, My wife and a shop assistant drag her out of the wrecked display to be told it did not do that last time, After that they decided to take a wheel chair.
This lady is quite well educated and used to fly Spitfires in the WWII, She is quite a proud person who does not like to think she can not do things less complicated than she used to do.
Compassion is needed and if possible the disabled should not be further handicapped using mobility aids.
Mobility scooters are now gaining popularity with the not-quite-so-badly disabled. Who can blame them when problems of parking the car or catching a bus no longer are there? I see the cause for DANZIG's earlier comment.
It was short-sighted, I say stupid, of the authorities to raise the speed limit of these vehicles from 4 to 8mph.
Theres a older guy in my town who is known by most to be a terrible scooter driver, he hasn't been in an accident yet but hes had a few close calls (I've see two near accidents myself involving him). He seems to think that being disabled gives him automatic right of way, either that or hes blind, he certainly weaves about a hell of a lot and thinks nothing about cutting in front of cars that have the right of way. I'm a bit surprised that no one has complained to the Police about him. Actually thinking about it someone could have and perhaps there was little they could do.
That aside if there was a test on driving one of these things I would be willing to bet theres no way this guy would pass. I'm afraid its only a matter of time before either he gets injured or more likely perhaps he causes someone else to be injured.
Acouple of years ago, one of the ladies who attends the computer class where I help out, decided that she should give up driving her car since she was 90 and her mincers were growing dim!
She had not had any accidents in many years of driving, but in two years of "riding the beast", it has twice run her over!
Once when she dismounted to check her lights were on and accidentally touched the controls as she bent over to look, and another time when she had again dismounted but caught her handbag strap in the controls.
Properly designed, the controls would not be active without someone seated on the machine.
"Properly designed, the controls would not be active without someone seated on the machine."
And how would I get it up the ramps into the back of my vehicle?
"I'm a bit surprised that no one has complained to the Police about him."
Why should they complain to the police about him any more than the many drivers or cyclists who nearly cause accidents?
Scooter drivers are subject to the same motoring laws as everybody else, and should be subject to the same policing.
While I might not be done for speeding, I can certainly get points on my normal licence for offences committed on the scooter such as careless driving, going through red lights or failing to give way, and if I use my scooter to go to the pub I can still be done for being over the limit, and lose my normal driving licence for twelve months.
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