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8 Amazing Tips For Staying Safe On Your Mobility Scooter

Mobility scooters help senior citizens travel around with little to no help and ease their lives. People with any physical problems and facing any difficulty walking take these scooters’ help to get around within their neighborhood. The number of people using these scooters is increasing rapidly in recent times. More than 1.7 million people rely on mobility scooters and wheelchairs in the United States of America. That said, there has also been a spike in accidents involving such scooters. People riding them should be aware of their surroundings, pedestrians, other vehicles, and follow the required safety precautions to avoid such accidents. 

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The reason you are reading this article is that you or any of your loved ones use mobility scooters in their daily lives, and you want to ensure maximum safety. So here are eight essential tips for staying safe while riding a mobility scooter.

  1. Purchase the safest and premium quality scooter.

First and foremost, consult your doctor or therapist to analyze whether you are capable of riding a mobility scooter or not. It will not only help you decide whether or not you should drive it but also to analyze what type of scooter to purchase. Make sure to buy a mobility scooter from a brand that has been in business for a long time. Check for reliability, accessibility, and handling of the scooter to know whether it aligns with your abilities and needs.

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  1. Make sure you are visible.

Staying visible to other people is another crucial factor for staying safe while riding a mobility scooter. The color of the scooter may be enough for people to spot you in daylight. However, some colors are not so bright and visible during night time. Therefore, to ensure visibility to fellow pedestrians, install an additional light source, reflectors, or any special flags on the mobility scooter. It is better to have at least two lights on each side of the scooter.

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  1. Train yourself before riding in public.

Perfection is essential while riding a mobility scooter. Make sure that you train yourself and get familiar with riding your scooter before you take it for a spin in public. Practice riding it in multiple situations and only get on the road once you are perfect. Doing so will minimize the risk of running into light poles, pedestrians, store shelves, and other vehicles on the road. Therefore, practice riding and maneuvering your e-scooter in your backyard and neighborhood before riding in public.

  1. Follow the rules.

Many people ride their mobility scooters on the road instead of the sidewalks. By doing so, you are not only breaking the rules but also endangering other’s lives. Use the road or street only if necessary. Also, speeding is not an option while riding a mobility scooter. The maximum speed for riding your e-scooter should be within 10 km/h. The goal is to travel at walking speeds and the optimum speed, so maintain 4-6 km/h to ensure safety. 

  1. Maintain your mobility scooter.

One of the primary causes of accidents involving mobility scooters is scooter malfunction. So you need to take care of the maintenance regularly. You must make sure to get your mobility scooter serviced every one or two years. Apart from the regular maintenance service, seek a technician’s help if you notice any functioning changes. Look out for common malfunctions such as brake failures, motor issues, and handlebar alignment, etc. Do not ride until fixed, even in case of a minor malfunction.

  1. Always be alert.

It is better not to assume that pedestrians and other people will hear or see you coming. Be alert to your surroundings to ensure other people’s safety. People walking on the sidewalk may be busy texting, talking to someone, looking for a restaurant, etc. Be mindful of the driveways and cars. Remaining slow at corners and turns, to be able to stop suddenly is essential as well. Installing a rearview mirror to the mobility scooter helps you in doing so. 

  1. Use the accessories to carry items.

While returning from shopping on your mobility scooter, always use the additional accessories such as racks and front baskets to carry bags. Avoid carrying bags or other items in your lap as they may distract you and fall off in the path of other pedestrians and vehicles. That said, use the front basket to carry lightweight items only. Placing any heavy items in the front basket can affect your handling abilities as the handlebar or steering gets heavy.

  1. Always wear a helmet.

Here’s the last and final safety tip for riding a mobility scooter. The death count and severe injuries for accidents involving mobility scooters are high. The most common injury in case of accidents involving e-scooters in 2018 was head trauma constituting about 40.2 percent. So always make sure to wear a premium quality helmet while riding one. It prevents you from any severe head trauma in case of an accident. 

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, the tips mentioned above will help you follow the necessary precautions and stay safe while riding a mobility scooter. Make sure to purchase the best quality mobility scooter that allows you to become independent and get closer to your loved ones. However, it is essential to operate them safely in the correct manner.