Advice

The modern mobility scooter is a safe and user-friendly piece of equipment, with low maintenance requirements, and is simple, safe and easy to use. There are a choice of speeds available of 4 and 8 mph, - when in reverse the scooter usually gives an audible alarm and goes at about half the set speed.

The BHTA (British Health Trades Association) have produced a leaflet called the “Highway Code” (!), which explains the simple, common sense road safety precautions that scooter users should observe. More details from www.BHTA.com

There are three classes of scooter – the Class 1. Portable mobility scooters as you would expect will fit into most cars in up to five separate pieces which are relatively light and easy to lift, and nowadays these are very easy to put back together. Other portable scooters are particularly light and can lifted into the car by able people without splitting into components, such as the Rascal XL 355, the Shoprider Micra and the Alpha, these scooters usually have either 10, 12 or 17 amp batteries and have a range of 8 – 12 miles on one charge. If they are under 50 Kg. in weight, they can be flown by Easy Jet and many other airlines at no charge, if booked at the same time as your ticket. The writer has taken hers abroad on many occasions and found Easy Jet exceptionally helpful. These scooters make life so much easier for shopping, trips with the family and days out, and some people find the three wheel versions easier to use around their home than a wheelchair.

The second type of scooter is the Class 2, pavement scooter, which is restricted to a speed of 4 miles per hour. There are many of these on the market, with ranges from 15 to 30 miles, depending on the size of motor and battery fitted. It is legal to go on the road if a pavement is unsafe, obstructed or not available but otherwise the driver must remain on the path. Some of these can be taken apart without tools and can be transported in a car in pieces, others can be hoisted in by mechanical or electrical hoists fitted to the vehicle. Ramps are also frequently used in appropriate cars.

Finally there are the Class 3 scooters, big road-going scooters - some of which have all terrain tyres to go over grass and poor ground, ideal for more exciting days out. These have two speed ranges, - for pavement use, up to 4 mph, and on the road, 8 mph. The new Icon from Pride also has the ability to increase to 9.5 mph when off the road. Most of these scooters have batteries from 40 – 75 amp, have more range and power and some can carry up to 35 stone in weight. Many have full suspension, up to 14” wheels front and rear, adjustable comfortable captain’s seats, all have full lights and indictors to comply with road safety requirements. They can be fitted with a beacon to allow dual carriageway use, and can really almost replace a car. They can be fitted with a variety of canopies for all weather protection. These will not fit in a normal vehicle as they are too heavy, but some people use a trailer to transport.

All scooters supplied by Scooters Direct Uk are CE approved and are supplied by reputable manufacturers and importers. They are simple to use, lever operated throttle control, automatic braking – when the throttle is released the scooter will stop. Many Class 2 and Class 3 scooters have an additional emergency handbrake. There are “safety” fuses to prevent overheating, and coded fault identification diagnosis systems. See our notes on “What do I need” to assist in your decision as to the correct Class of mobility scooter for your requirements.

Scooter Battery maintenance is very straightforward, and the batteries are simple to charge, using the same power as a light bulb. We suggest that batteries are kept fully charged – this is the equivalent of a full tank of fuel in a car. Batteries should not be left to drain entirely, as it is very hard to recover them if this is done. It is not dangerous to leave a battery on charge for any length of time as the modern chargers are “intelligent” and switch themselves on and of as required by the battery.

 
Sunday 25 June, 2017