Sunday, November 26, 2006

Mobility Scooters illegal

Untaxed and uninsured liabilities on the roads.

Back in October I complained about the abundance of erratically operated mobility scooters in our supermarkets , on the pavements, and sometimes on the roads!
This was at the time when an elderly gentleman on his electric scooter cause mayhem on the A19 Tyne Tunnel approach road.In 2004, the most recent year for which figures are available, there were a reported 1,134 incidents involving scooters, including the deaths of eight riders who were hit by cars or lorries on the open road.

I called then for some minimum training standards and regulation, now it seems that others have taken this issue seriously too.

Last night Ray Hodgkinson, director general of the industry body the British Healthcare Trades Association, said:

"They should be licensed just like any other vehicle under the Road Traffic Act. If they're on the road, they should have lights and indicators. We have a responsibility as an industry to make sure users are properly instructed. After all, these things can be lethal."

Liberal Democrat MP Bob Russell, who has campaigned on the issue, said:

"The law in this area is extremely muddled. I welcome the mobility these machines give to the elderly and disabled but with freedom must come responsibility. We need some form of regulation - not to create another level of bureaucracy - but for the safety of users and the general public."

A spokesman for the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents said:

"We have received a number of complaints about these scooters. We feel there should be a minimum requirement for third-party insurance and some training."

The Department for Transport said:

"We are currently reviewing the rules that govern the use of these vehicles. We believe that the vast majority of users operate their vehicles safely and legally."

Asked why the law was not being applied to scooter users, the spokesman said:

"That is a matter for local authorities and the police."

So next time you are nearly bowled over in Tescos, or held up on the road by an electric scooter, whip out your mobile and call the boys in blue!


The Daily Mail

Many pedestrians race about the country - often on the pavement - at speeds of up to six miles an hour! These people often wear rubber soled 'trainers' so that Liberal Democrat MPs and other poor souls are taken by surprise as they timidly return home from ROSPA meetings. These pedestrians don't pass a test, they often have no lights or insurance. Hundredds are killed each year! They should all have their legs cut off and be made to get around on crutches, Well they should be kept indoors really. Or would that make them as sad as you?
I hardly think that a call for some light regulation and basic safety and operational training is a 'radical' suggestion. I think Jack Nutine's comments are a wee bit over the top!
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