Safety lessons first as police look to cut number of mobility scooter accidents

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ROAD safety officers have announced details of driving lessons for mobility scooter users which are being staged after 17 people were killed or seriously injured while riding them in the last five years.

Recorded figures show that since 2007 there have been 28 incidents involving mobility scooters across South Yorkshire and it is thought that many more incidents go unreported.

Police said they had developed the Scooter Safe scheme to teach mobility scooter users about the legal requirements of owning and using a scooter and the skills required to drive their machine safely.

South Yorkshire’s Safer Roads Partnership has teamed up with Rotherham-based Parkgate Mobility to deliver a series of free mobility scooter safety sessions.

The first event will be held at the Lifewise Centre, Hellaby, Rotherham on May 30 at 4pm, with capacity for eight mobility scooter users to attend each event.

Taking part in the two-hour Scooter Safe workshop is completely free of charge for South Yorkshire residents.

Officers said Scooter Safe will involve a mixture of theory-based and hands-on sessions with attendees using a variety of mobility scooters, or even their own machines, to navigate their way around a series of obstacles.

Pc Mick Hedges said: “The two- hour session is designed to be fun and interactive, and is open for scooter users of all ages to attend.

“During the session we aim to explain the lawful requirements and responsibilities of owning a scooter, provide manoeuvrability skills and raise road safety awareness to mobility scooter users.

“The aim of the project is to help South Yorkshire residents with mobility issues to maintain their independence whilst enhancing their own safety and confidence on our roads and other public areas.”

Tracy Simmons, of Parkgate Mobility, said: “Working with South Yorkshire Police to develop these sessions has provided a great opportunity to raise awareness of the importance of mobility scooter safety.

“The Lifewise Centre at Hellaby provides an ideal setting to run these sessions in a safe, managed environment that represents a range of conditions that a scooter user could expect to face on the high street.”

To book your place on this or future courses telephone South Yorkshire Police on 01709 832 455.