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Welcome to Mobility UK Advice and help for those using mobility equipment and the Highway Code.

The Highway Code for mobility scooter and chair users.

LEGAL DEFINITIONS
Three types of powered wheelchairs and mobility scooters (called invalid carriages in law) are defined in The Use of Invalid Carriages on Highways Regulations 1988
* Class 1 invalid carriage – manual wheelchairs
Means an invalid carriage which is not mechanically propelled
* Class 2 invalid carriage – powered wheelchairs and scooters
Means a mechanically propelled invalid carriage, which is so constructed or adapted as to be incapable of exceeding a speed of 4 mph on the level under its own power.
These are only suitable for riding on footpaths and roads and have a top speed of 4 mph (6 km/h).
The unladen weight of a Class 1 or Class 2 invalid carriage must not exceed 250lb (113.4 kg).
* Class 3 invalid carriage - Powered wheelchairs and other outdoor powered vehicles, including scooters
Means a mechanically propelled invalid carriage which is so constructed or adapted as to be capable of exceeding a speed of 4 mph (6 km/h) but incapable of exceeding a speed of 8 mph on the level under its own power.
These are suitable for riding on roads and have a top speed of 8 mph (12 km/h). The unladen weight of a Class 3 invalid carriage must not exceed 330 lb (150 kg). These also have a switch to limit the top speed to 4 mph (6 km/h) for use on pavements or footpaths.
A Class 3 vehicle is not legally defined as a motor vehicle and the user does not need to have a driving licence or take a driving test. A Class 3 vehicle can only be used by a disabled person aged 14 or over, or by an able-bodied person who is demonstrating a vehicle, training a disabled user, or taking a vehicle to or from a place for maintenance or repair.

The Relevant sections of the Highway Code applicable to mobility devices.
36
There is one class of manual wheelchair (called a Class 1 invalid carriage) and two classes of powered wheelchairs and powered mobility scooters. Manual wheelchairs and Class 2 vehicles are those with an upper speed limit of 4 mph (6 km/h) and are designed to be used on pavements. Class 3 vehicles are those with an upper speed limit of 8 mph (12 km/h) and are equipped to be used on the road as well as the pavement.
37
When you are on the road you should obey the guidance and rules for other vehicles; when on the pavement you should follow the guidance and rules for pedestrians.

38
Pavements are safer than roads and should be used when available. You should give pedestrians priority and show consideration for other pavement users, particularly those with a hearing or visual impairment who may not be aware that you are there.
39
Powered wheelchairs and scooters MUST NOT travel faster than 4 mph (6 km/h) on pavements or in pedestrian areas. You may need to reduce your speed to adjust to other pavement users who may not be able to move out of your way quickly enough or where the pavement is too narrow.
[Law UICHR 1988 reg 4]
40
When moving off the pavement onto the road, you should take special care. Before moving off, always look round and make sure it’s safe to join the traffic. Always try to use dropped kerbs when moving off the pavement, even if this means travelling further to locate one. If you have to climb or descend a kerb, always approach it at right angles and don’t try to negotiate a kerb higher than the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations.

41
You should take care when travelling on the road as you may be travelling more slowly than other traffic (your machine is restricted to 8 mph (12 km/h) and may be less visible).
42
When on the road, Class 3 vehicles should travel in the direction of the traffic. Class 2 users should always use the pavement when it is available. When there is no pavement, you should use caution when on the road. Class 2 users should, where possible, travel in the direction of the traffic. [Law UICHR 1988 reg 9]
43
You MUST follow the same rules about using lights, indicators and horns as for other road vehicles, if your vehicle is fitted with them. At night, lights MUST be used. Be aware that other road users may not see you and you should make yourself more visible - even in the daytime and also at dusk - by, for instance, wearing a reflective jacket or reflective strips on the back of the vehicle. [Law UICHR 1988 reg 9]
44
Take extra care at road junctions. When going straight ahead, check to make sure there are no vehicles about to cross your path from the left, the right, or overtaking you and turning left. There are several options for dealing with right turns, especially
turning from a major road. If moving into the middle of the road is difficult or dangerous, you can
• stop on the left-hand side of the road and wait for a safe gap in the traffic
• negotiate the turn as a pedestrian, i.e. travel along the pavement and cross the road between pavements where it is safe to do so. Class 3 users should switch the vehicle to the lower speed limit when on pavements.
If the junction is too hazardous, it may be worth considering an alternative route. Similarly, when negotiating major roundabouts (i.e. with two or more lanes) it may be safer for you to use the pavement or find a route which avoids the roundabout altogether.
45
All normal parking restrictions should be observed. Your vehicle should not be left unattended if it causes an obstruction to other pedestrians - especially those in wheelchairs. Parking concessions provided under the Blue Badge scheme (see ‘other information’) will apply to those vehicles displaying a valid badge.
46
These vehicles MUST NOT be used on motorways (see Rule 253). They should not be used on unrestricted dual carriageways where the speed limit exceeds 50 mph (80 km/h) but if they are used on these dual carriageways, they MUST have a flashing amber beacon. A flashing amber beacon should be used on all other dual carriageways (see Rule 220). [Laws RTRA sect 17(2) & (3), & RVLR reg 17(1) & 26]

General Guidance for using a mobility scooter or powerchair on the road.

  • Remember that you are not driving a car but a very small and slow vehicle, which can make you very vulnerable. It is wise to avoid using busy roads.
  • Although you may use dual carriageways with a maximum speed of 50mph, it is strongly recommended that you avoid these for the safety of you and others and seek an alternative route. If this is unavoidable you can only travel on these roads providing you display an additional amber-flashing beacon that is visible from the front and rear of your scooter.
  • You must not use your scooter on motorways.
  • You are not allowed to use bus lanes or cycle lanes.
  • You must give way to pedestrians on crossings.
  • You must obey traffic lights and all other road signals and instructions, including stop signs, give way signs and signs for one-way streets.
  • Always indicate before pulling out or turning left or right. When you are passing parked vehicles be aware that someone may open a door as you approach, as they may not be aware of your presence.
  • Remember that other vehicles are almost certainly moving much faster than you are and may reach you before you expect them to. Be sure that you have plenty of time to carry out your actions.
  • Use your mirrors but be aware they may give a false impression of distance. Vehicles may well approach you quicker than you think.
  • Always give plenty of notice of your intention to carry out a manoeuvre by indicating well in advance. Remember your scooter is slow and vulnerable.
  • Use your hazard lights if you cannot move for any reason, or if you are in a difficult or dangerous situation. Do not drive with them on unnecessarily.

Registering your Class 3 disability vehicle.
Class 1 and Class 2 invalid carriages do not have to be registered with the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). You must register a Class 3 vehicle with the DVLA. There is no fee to pay and the vehicle does not need registration plates. You must renew your tax disc each year.
To register and license a Class 3 vehicle you should full in a form V55/4 (for new vehicles) or V55/5 (for used vehicles) and take or send it to your nearest DVLA local office, not the DVLA headquarters in Swansea.
Guidance on filling in the forms is given in the DVLA’s leaflets INF210 and INF211. You can find the address of your local DVLA office:
• At http://www.gov.uk/browse/driving
• In the V100 information leaflet available from post offices that issue tax discs; or
• By phoning 0870 243 0444.

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