WDP ScooterSafe 2019 Warrington

Warrington Disability Partnership (WDP), its social enterprise the Disability Trading Company and vehicle adaptation specialist BAS (NW) are coming together to hold the latest Scoota-Safe Day in Warrington in a bid to reduce the number of accidents and injuries.

Taking place on Saturday 19th October 2019, the event is aimed at enhancing current and future mobility scooter and electric wheelchair users’ safety amidst a growing number of accidents involving mobility scooters.

Fuelled by the increasing popularity of mobility vehicles, which have become larger in size and more powerful, as well as a growing second-hand market, the Scoota-Safe scheme was developed in response to increased concerns about the number of untrained, uninsured and unsafe mobility device users on roads and pavements.

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When speaking on the topic of the dangers of mobility scooters, Dave Thompson MBE DL, Co-Founder and Chief Executive of WDP, commented: “Sadly we receive regular reports of deaths and tens of thousands of accidents across the country, we’ve had dozens of accidents here in Warrington, and some have been life-changing.”

Dave also pointed out that mobility scooter users are not required to have a licence, pass a test, have their vehicles MOT’d or take out insurance.

“The latest mobility scooters can travel at eight miles an hour and they’re deadly in the wrong hands,” he said.

Seeking to stem the number of accidents and injuries, the event will allow users to test-drive mobility scooters available from the Disability Trading Company on a free test track whilst receiving information and guidance from the staff from WDP’s Shopmobility Service.

“It’s about educating people so they can enjoy the huge benefits that mobility scooters can bring to the lives of people who have mobility difficulties,” commented Dave.

Raising awareness of the safety aspects of owning and using mobility scooters, the charity will offer free training to help users understand which scooters are suitable to go on buses, as well as advice on using scooters and powerchairs in shopping areas, on pavements, in parks and in open spaces.

Alongside championing scooter safety, the event will showcase Disability Trading Company’s portfolio of mobility aids, as well as Warrington-based BAS (NW)’s latest adaptions including hoists, seating and hand controls.

The Scoota-Safe programme was initially developed by the Warrington-based charity, securing support from a number of local public sector organisations and officials, including Warrington Borough Council Highways Department and Cheshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner David Kean.

According to the WDP, the initiative has now garnered national recognition, with Gavin Thompson, Commercial Manager at WDP, involved in a Government review of mobility scooter safety.

The event comes as scooter safety continues to make headlines, recently leading to a petition to review mobility scooter regulations being launched by the family of an elderly grandmother who was seriously injured after being struck by a mobility vehicle.

With a number of organisations across the industry running various initiatives to improve scooter safety, Ray Hodgkinson MBE, former Director General of the British Healthcare Trades Association (BHTA), has suggested nationwide formal qualifications with CPD related to the selling of mobility vehicles could help to improve scooter safety.

Scoota-Safe 2019 will be held in the Old Market Place in the Golden Square, Warrington from 10am till 4.30pm on 19th October 2019.

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