Response to my challenge.
I recently challenged 11 mobility scooter manufacturers to make their scooters highly visible as standard. So far, I have only received one response and I think you will find the following of interest as I did.
Mobility scooters do not have to have insurance as standard and the ones that travel up to 4mph do not have to display any high viz apart from small reflectors, red at the rear, white at the front and blue on the sides. Most of us who have seen these reflectors would agree they are wholly inadequate.
For scooters that travel on the roads, these are supposed to display a flashing amber beacon on a pole. I for one have never seen this happen.
Many people purchase a scooter when their GP advises them they are no longer fit to drive. There is still a degree of pride and kudos in the choice of mobility scooter and I was told a high viz vest screams ” I am elderly or disabled” not ” Be safe, be seen”. Madness this vanity.
When asked if some reflective scotch tape could be applied by manufacturers the answer was – If we do that it costs us £10. By the time this gets to the dealer this is £50 and if they pass that onto the customer they will lose business to a competitor who may be cheaper. The analogy was the match seller flourishes whilst the fire extinguisher seller goes out of business.
So it’s down to Pride and Profits that people are unnecessarily being killed. In 2015 there were 9 deaths and 46 serious injuries to scooter users.
The only way forward is Legislation, to make it compulsory for all scooter users to make themselves as visible as possible. Perhaps retailers could also assume a social responsibility too, great advertising opportunity and chance to save lives.