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Mobility Scooters

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pixrobin
Canley
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1 of 107  Sat 21st Jun 2014 3:49pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2014  Total posts:1036

Since joining this forum earlier this year I have spent lots of time looking at Google Earth Street Views around city. With my now limited mobility I generally check if I could get to different places of interest using my mobility scooter: dropped kerbs, ramps, etc. I have been amazed just how much of Coventry would be available to me. Here in Accrington things are so different. I have to choose my routes carefully. Though I can get into the town centre easily there are many places which are off-limits. I have yet to find a suitable route to the local hospital which is less than a mile away. Use the bus? One has to get a bus pass for which you need to demonstrate your skills at manouvering the scooter - and to do the test you have to go to Burnley but without the pass you can't take your scooter on a bus to go there to take it. Angry
Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
NormK
bulkington
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2 of 107  Sat 21st Jun 2014 5:43pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2012  Total posts:854

I am only too aware of the problems in some cities for scooter users, like having to go to the end of a road to cross and then come back on the other side in order to get down a side road. In Coventry we are fortunate to have drop kerbs at most junctions. Thumbs up
Milly rules

Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
pixrobin
Canley
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3 of 107  Thu 24th Jul 2014 3:12am  
Member: Joined Mar 2014  Total posts:1036

As there has been a lot of criticism of people on mobility scooters I thought I would start a thread on the subject. Perhaps I can explain why we are such cantankerous old b.................... Wink First of all there is the dismay when you realise you actually do need one. Then you see a sign that suggests some local authority department will perhaps give you a grant to help with the purchase. At least there is some help - you think. You go through the rigmarole of filling out applications. Then when you are told you can get the grant (in my case £500) towards the cost you are overjoyed - until you learn that it can be used only in the local mobility outlet. I looked and found the model I wanted and the price was £1700, so would cost me £1200 when I applied the grant to it. (The salesman suggested that if I couldn't afford to pay cash then I could lease it for 2 years at £22 per week though I wouldn't get the grant in that situation.) But then I looked online. Same scooter can be bought for £649. Same brand, same specification, and delivered free. You can guess that I passed up on the grant and the leasing. You can take the 'pavement' mobility scooters on a bus as long as you have a pass from any of the bus companies which is issued after you have passed their test to show you can manouvre the vehicle onto a bus successfully. My local test centre is 6 miles away in Burnley. But, how do you get there? Certainly not by bus as you don't have a pass to allow you to do so. None of the local taxi firms will allow mobility scooters - only wheelchairs. A mobility scooter is there to give you independence - to get out on your own, Up to a point you can. That point is usually where they have forgotten to put in a dropped kerb to allow you to cross a road. But there are other things that happen to discourage you. In one street in the town they have created the dropped kerb but then someone else has come along and put in a pole to carry a one-way street sign slap bang in the middle of it. On another crossing they have created a dropped kerb where there is a brick wall just two feet from the kerb - and this is a busy thoroughfare. When I went to report it at the council offices I was told that few people on mobility scooters used that route. Now I wonder why? It is one of the streets that still has small quaint shops which struggle to survive. So you go to the library. It is a rear 'disabled entrance' for those needing a wheelchair or scooter to get about. There's a big button placed strategically to allow you to open the door. But it is so far from the door that by the time you've manouvred to the door it has closed again. Sad You hammer on the door and, at last some irate person comes to open it. But hooray, you get in. You ask for directions to the local history section. "Go up the stairs, turn left through the doors ......" I break in, "Is there a lift?" "Yes, it's over there," she says pointing nonchalantly almost skywards over her left shoulder. I make my way over to where I was generally directed. The button to the lift is on the wall just to the left of the doors. I have to go broadside so that I can reach the button. The doors open immediately but ................ Yes, you've guessed it. Before I can manouvre round to get in the lift the doors have closed again. I reverse up around a stack of books and proceed to the enquiry desk to get help. It isn't me going "mutter, mutter, mutter" under my breath. Anyway she swaggers across to the lift, in front of me. She punches the button to open the door and then turns to go. Even though I was ready the doors close in front of me. "Excuse me!" I have a good idea what she's thinking - though by this time I am wondering if librarians are taught to think. (From experience I'm sure most are but this one must have missed those lessons.) Finally I get in the lift. OK, where are the buttons. They're behind me. I can't reach them. My back wheels are only inches from the door. I back up those few inches. I still cannot reach them. And, where's the emergency button? Just BELOW THE REST OF THEM! I sit there a few minutes thinking someone will need to use the lift. Fifteen minutes pass by. I panic and start banging on the walls of the lift. Takes a few minutes before anyopne comes to my rescue. The doors open and lets in some fresh air. "Oh, it's you again. WHAT'S the matter now." I reverse out quickly with the vision of the tiny lift being a coffin and me being buried sat on my mobility scooter. I ignore the librarian's ranting and make for the exit. I don't bother with the button. The front end of my scooter becomes a battering ram and I get out into the open air. I just want to get home. But, with a top speed of 4mph it ain't gonna be quick.
Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
Dreamtime
Perth Western Australia
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4 of 107  Thu 24th Jul 2014 4:29am  
Member: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:3049

Hi Pixrobin, Sounds like something out of Monty Python. I don't own a mobility scooter, and I do sympathise with your encounter with the lift. Only the other week I got left behind in one on the ground floor after my daughter stepped out and the door immediately closed. I left her chatting to the door asking if I could hear her but I pressed for the third floor and then pressed for the ground floor again and the door opened for me to see my daughter and another 'passenger' waiting to use the lift. He must have thought it strange seeing someone talking to the lift door. So I can imagine your plight and think the librarian in question needs a few lessons in good manners. I suppose the idea is for you to go in backwards, and be quick about it!!!!! Oh my
Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
scrutiny
coventry
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5 of 107  Thu 24th Jul 2014 11:10am  
Member: Joined Feb 2010  Total posts:621

On about mobility scooters, try mine. TEKMELF should be interested in this one. A fully armed Klingon Bird of Prey with 2 working H2O fusion cannons. However, the Warp drive does not work so limited to impulse power only. 4 mph max. Oh my Edited by member, 24th Jul 2014 11:31 am
Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
pixrobin
Canley
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6 of 107  Fri 25th Jul 2014 12:41am  
Member: Joined Mar 2014  Total posts:1036

Mine's in space dock at the moment, having its lithium ions boosted. Wink Here's the view from the bridge as I passed over the ridge returning home this evening.
Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
TonyS
Coventry
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7 of 107  Fri 25th Jul 2014 10:37am  
Moderator: Joined Jan 2011  Total posts:1553

On 24th Jul 2014 3:12am, pixrobin said: ...Finally I get in the lift. OK, where are the buttons. They're behind me. I can't reach them. My back wheels are only inches from the door. I back up those few inches. I still cannot reach them. And, where's the emergency button? Just BELOW THE REST OF THEM! I sit there a few minutes...
Maybe I've missed something, so forgive me, but what was preventing you from STANDING UP and pressing the desired button? These are mobility scooters, not wheelchairs!
Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
Dreamtime
8 of 107  Fri 25th Jul 2014 10:46am  
Off-topic / chat  

TonyS
Coventry
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9 of 107  Fri 25th Jul 2014 11:11am  
Moderator: Joined Jan 2011  Total posts:1553

The problem there Dreamtime is one of mechanical engineering - I don't believe these scooters possess a reverse gear - so the user would need to get off and push it into the lift Roll eyes Big grin
Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
NormK
bulkington
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10 of 107  Fri 25th Jul 2014 12:09pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2012  Total posts:854

OH YES THEY DO!! Oh my
Milly rules

Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
TonyS
Coventry
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11 of 107  Fri 25th Jul 2014 12:38pm  
Moderator: Joined Jan 2011  Total posts:1553

Do they really Norm? Well, you learn something every day. Dreamtime, you were right (as always!) - maybe he should have reversed in! (or simply stood up) Thumbs up
Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
TonyS
12 of 107  Fri 25th Jul 2014 12:40pm  
Off-topic / chat  

NormK
bulkington
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13 of 107  Fri 25th Jul 2014 1:30pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2012  Total posts:854

On 25th Jul 2014 11:11am, TonyS said: The problem there Dreamtime is one of mechanical engineering - I don't believe these scooters possess a reverse gear - so the user would need to get off and push it into the lift Roll eyes Big grin
There is nothing Mechanical involved, it works Electrically with a reversable motor, fwd on one side of the steering and rev on the other. Thumbs up
Milly rules

Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
pixrobin
Canley
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Thread starter
14 of 107  Fri 25th Jul 2014 2:14pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2014  Total posts:1036

Hi Tony I have an arthiritic hip which gives severe pain when articulated. But, there are many amputees who prefer mobility scooters to wheelchairs - though generally they have access to both. Aside from the 'portable' models, the scooters often have a much longer range than motorised wheelchairs and are more stable. If I had been using a powered wheelchair (or even a three-wheeled scooter) yesterday they would have been making funeral arrangements for me today as a poorly designed 'dropped kerb' would have thrown me under the back wheels of a passing truck. Even then I had to find a quiet space and smoke a couple of cigarettes before I could continue my journey. I'm not frightened of leaving this world, but I don't wish it to be through someone else's incompetence or lack of thought. Other 'scooterists' I know are, like me, fiercely independent. They hate the fact that they have to use one. They hate the fact that some places they used to go on a regular basis are now denied them. They don't wish to have a constant companion to 'look after' them. Our disabilities are physical not mental. We don't live in our own world, we live in yours. It used to be our world too. I live on my own in a small two-bedroom, former cotton-mill worker's, house. There are some days when I cannot make it down the stairs. So, with help from a friend, we have converted the second bedroom into an independent living space. I have a second computer (networked to a couple of NAS drives downstairs to access any files I may require), small fridge - with supplies to make cold snacks, telephone, and kettle. So, even on my bad days, I can keep in touch with the outside world. My 'helper' comes in once a week to tidy, and use the vacuum cleaner (another item I cannot use because of my hip). Her help has nothing to do with officialdom: I have known her 20 years. (If only I were 30 years younger ............... Oh my ) Which official helper would text you every day to check you are OK. Her home-educated children are part of the package. They come along because they want to. I show them the intricasies of computers and photography, but also allow them independent use of the computers and tablets. But, thank you Tony, you have made me realise that I need to give my helper an increase in pocket-money. Edited by member, 25th Jul 2014 2:22 pm
Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters
pixrobin
Canley
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Thread starter
15 of 107  Fri 25th Jul 2014 3:19pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2014  Total posts:1036

Mattash I had a visit by a salesman from the dark cluster in the middle of the night. He sold me these. The salesman suggests that suitably placed on your craft they act somewhat like crystal balls. When a 'fifty something' believes he has the agility of a 'twenty something' they emit an alert so that you don't come to occupy the same piece of the space-time continuum and he then suggests your ilk are 'aggressive'
Public Transport and Travel - Mobility Scooters

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