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Getting Around Safely: How to Drive an Electric Mobility Scooter

Getting Around Safely: How to Drive an Electric Mobility Scooter

Getting Around Safely: How to Drive an Electric Mobility Scooter

Getting Around Safely: How to Drive an Electric Mobility Scooter

An electric mobility scooter can give you access to places you weren't able to go before. But safety is important. Learn how to drive a mobility scooter below.

Electric mobility scooter

An electric mobility scooter can improve your quality of life by helping you get where you need to go when walking is a challenge. Great for days out and holidays. Mobility scooters are relatively easy to drive, but they can seem intimidating if you've never used one. All you need to do if follow a basic scooter safety tips.

Starting slowly and learning as much as possible about your mobility scooter helps you operate the scooter safely. Use resources at your disposal, including product information, your scooter salesperson, and your fellow scooter drivers.

Before you take your scooter out for a drive, read these tips on how to do so safely.

Read Your Electric Mobility Scooter Manual

When you purchase a new mobility scooter, read the manual thoroughly before driving it for the first time. Review the controls and features of your model to ensure you know how it works. Find those features on your scooter as you read the manual.

Learn how to control the speed and steering of the scooter. The manual should also cover safety and maintenance steps. Keep the manual handy to reference it as you learn to use your scooter. 

Ask for Advice

If you choose a reputable mobility scooter company, you have a resource for learning to drive the unit safely. While shopping, ask questions about the different models, including the safety features and differences in driving. Ask for a demonstration of the scooter you choose.

Don't be afraid to contact the company after you make your selection. You'll likely have new questions once you get your scooter home. Call the vendor with any follow-up questions or concerns to be sure you understand your mobility vehicle.

You can also ask acquaintances who already use mobility scooters. They may have pointers on how to drive the unit safely, or they may share tips they've learned.

Check for mobility scooter driving courses through local community centers. Occupational therapists sometimes offer training or can help you learn to use your scooter safely. 

Make Adjustments

When you get into a car, you adjust the seat and mirrors before you drive. A mobility scooter requires the same care to give you proper control.

You may need to adjust the seat positioning or handlebar height to fit your body. Sit down on the scooter to test the current position to ensure you can reach all of the controls and safety features. Make adjustments so you can comfortably and safely steer the unit while seated.

Use Proper Techniques

Safe scooter driving requires you to keep your feet on the platform at all times. It's also a good idea to have both hands on the steering controls all the time. The machine is more difficult to control with only one hand, and you may try to over correct and could lose control completely if you are not careful. Speak to your dealer as they maybe able to assist if you have the use on only one hand

Always give driving the scooter your full attention. Avoid using your phone, eating, drinking, or doing other activities while you're driving. Distracted scooter driving is dangerous for you and any pedestrians in your way.

Start at Home

If you've never driven a scooter, start at home or an area away from other people, such as an empty parking lot or a park. Use this time to learn how to accelerate, brake, and steer safely. Practice until you feel comfortable navigating situations in public.

Choose your first public outing carefully. Instead of going straight to a crowded festival or shopping centre, try a less busy park or quiet shop. Work up to situations with tight corners, small aisles, and lots of people.

Go Slowly

Your mobility scooter is easier to control at slower speeds. Start out slower until you get comfortable with the controls. Be prepared to slow down or stop if you feel like you're having difficulty controlling the unit.

Adjust your speed when you're in public. It's difficult to stop quickly if someone steps in front of you when you're going fast.

Choose Terrain Wisely

Scooters give you access to areas that might otherwise be difficult due to your mobility issues. But they're not meant for all types of terrain.

The safest place for a mobility scooter is on flat, level ground. Avoid very steep inclines or rough areas can be dangerous and may cause you to tip or lose control. Plan your route to avoid potentially dangerous areas.

Watch Out for Other People

Since you're driving a motorized unit, you need to watch out for pedestrians and others on the sidewalks, roads, and indoor spaces where you drive. Your scooter can cause serious injury to others. Being respectful and sharing spaces with others protects you and everyone else.

Mobility scooter rules say that you need to follow the same rules as vehicles if you drive on the road. That includes using lights and indicators and traveling with the flow of traffic. When on sidewalks, you're required to follow pedestrian rules.

Always be aware of traffic when you drive near roadways. Proceed cautiously anytime you cross a road even if the driver should yield to you. Scooters aren't always highly visible to cars, and distracted driving is also a potential threat.

Maintain the Scooter

Regular maintenance keeps your mobility scooter in good working order. That makes it easier to control and drive your vehicle safely.

Start by charging the battery regularly. It can take several hours to fully charge the battery, so plan accordingly. Going out with a partially charged battery could leave you stranded.

Check the air pressure in your tires regularly. Keeping the tires pumped up lets you drive the scooter smoothly and gives you better control of the steering. It also protects the tires from damage. 

Inspect the scooter regularly to look for any issues. Have broken parts repaired or replaced immediately to allow for safe operation. Waiting can make the problem worse or put you at risk for injury.

Improve Your Scooter Skills

An electric mobility scooter takes some adjustment time to ensure safe driving. Start slow and always use caution around people, vehicles, structures, and obstacles. Contact us if you need a mobility scooter to improve your daily life.

 


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