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Disabled People: Mobility Scooters

Volume 718: debated on Tuesday 6 April 2010

Questions

Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what action they have taken to implement the recommendations of Carriage of Mobility Scooters on Public Transport—Feasibility Study, published by the Department for Transport in 2006, to “widen the definition of the reference wheelchair to include ‘mobility aids'”, to issue guidance on which mobility scooters are suitable for use on public transport, and to ensure that operators should be required to transport such scooters. [HL3211]

To ask Her Majesty's Government when guidelines will be made available to all local bus operators regarding the use of wheelchairs and mobility scooters on their services; and how passengers will be made aware of any specifications with which their mobility scooters must comply. [HL3212]

The feasibility study identified areas where further work is required in order that firm policy and guidance be formulated. The study suggested that smaller and lighter mobility scooters (“class 2” devices) equipped with dry cell or gel batteries could be safely carried on public transport in the right circumstances. The Department for Transport continues to keep this matter under review.

Guidance for users of public transport services Get wise to using public transport has been published by the British Healthcare Trades Association in conjunction with the Department for Transport, and can be found at:

www.dft.gov.uk/transportforyou/access/tipws/getwheelchairwise/getwheelchairwiseawheelchair6l66.

The guidance highlights that it may be possible for class 2 scooters to be carried but that it is a decision for the individual operator as to whether they carry mobility scooters on their services, given that the design of individual buses and levels of occupancy may impinge on what is practicable in different places.

The department has also published guidance about using buses and coaches in the form of frequently asked questions for disabled passengers, which is on the department's website at:

http://www.dft.gov.uk/transportforyou/access/buses/frequentlyaskedquestions?page=2.