Transport Committee: Press Notice

Session 2009-10, 11 December 2009

New Inquiry and Call for Evidence


New Inquiry and Call for Evidence

Mobility scooters

Terms of reference and call for evidence

Mobility scooters (defined in law as “invalid carriages” ) are becoming increasingly common. Depending on its class, a mobility scooter may be used on pavements at up to 4 mph or on the road at up to 8 mph. There is no legal requirement to undertake training or to pass a test before using one.

The interaction of mobility scooters with pedestrians and other road users has given rise to a number of issues. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents has received calls from people concerned about being nearly knocked down by mobility scooters. Bus drivers have reported being delayed by mobility scooters in bus lanes. The press have also highlighted incidents. Some charities, on the other hand, have suggested that the frequency of such incidents are exaggerated and are largely a media creation.

The Committee has previously recommended that the Government urgently review the increasing use and safety of mobility scooters with a view to establishing whether safety guidelines or mandatory training would be beneficial. Research published by the Department for Transport in 2006 suggested that overall mobility scooters did not have a significant impact upon road safety. However, the Department has subsequently acknowledged that the numbers of mobility scooters are on the increase and there is a need to review issues such as safety guidelines.

The Transport Committee will hold a one-off evidence session into mobility scooters. In particular:

  1. Is the current legal position clear with regard to mobility scooters and pedestrian use of space?
  2. Does the current situation protect both pedestrians and other road users?
  3. Does an increase in mobility scooter use and a greater variety of similar non-standard vehicles mean that new legislation and guidance is needed?
  4. What evidence is there about the safety of pedestrians and mobility scooters and similar non-standard vehicles sharing space?

Interested parties are invited to submit evidence by Tuesday 19 January 2010.

Guidance on submitting written evidence

It assists the Committee if those submitting written evidence adhere to the following guidelines:

  1. Submissions should be as short as is consistent with conveying the relevant information. As a rough guide, it is usually helpful if they can be confined to six pages or less. Paragraphs should be numbered for ease of reference. A single-page summary of the main points is sometimes helpful. The submission should be in a form suitable for monochrome photocopying.
  2. Evidence should be submitted in Word or Rich Text format, by e-mail to [email protected] The body of the e-mail should include a contact name, telephone number and postal address. It should be absolutely clear who the submission is from, particularly whether it is on behalf of an organisation or in the name of an individual.
  3. Once accepted by the Committee, written evidence becomes the Committee’s property and it may decide to publish it or make other public use of it. You should not publish evidence submitted to the Committee. If you wish your submission, or any part of it, to be treated as confidential, then please indicate this clearly when you submit it.
  4. Though the Committee is happy to receive copies of published material, formal submissions of evidence should be original work and not published elsewhere.
  5. Committee staff are happy to give further advice on any aspect of the Committee’s work by phone or e-mail.

More detailed guidance on giving evidence to a select committee is available on-line at:

http://www.parliament.uk/documents/upload/witnessguide.pdf