A question that we're often asked is can I drive my mobility scooter on the road and what laws apply if I do.
The answer very much depends on what type of mobility scooter you own.
There are two legal categories of mobility scooters available in the UK as follows:
Only Class 3 mobility scooters are legally allowed on the road.
To know whether your scooter is Class 3, check your mobility scooter user manual, look at the scooter's speed settings, Google the make and model or contact one of our showrooms.
If your mobility scooter can travel faster than 4mph, meaning it is a Class 3, you can drive your scooter on the road.
If your scooter has a maximum speed of 4mph, it is a Class 2, meaning it is against the law to travel on the road. The only exception is when crossing the road or when there isn't a pavement available.
The same as any other road user, you must follow the Highway Code at all times.
Specifically, drivers of Class 3 mobility scooters:
Yes, but it is advised that you avoid dual carriage ways where the speed limit is 50mph or above.
When driving on a dual carriageway, an amber flashing light is required.
For your safety, Cumbria Mobility would advise that you:
Note, it is not legal, or indeed safe, to drive a mobility scooter on the motorway under any circumstances.
As above, the same rules apply as to other road users. Tempting as it might be to drive after a few beers, it is illegal and you can still be arrested for driving a mobility scooter under the influence.
The same goes for drugs as well, both illegal and legal.
You need to check your prescription drugs and avoid using your scooter when taking drugs that may have symptoms which make you drowsy.
As well as being a danger to other road users and pedestrians, it could also void your insurance and make you liable in the case of an accident.
No, but as above, you must follow the Highway Code at all times.
No, there are no legal eyesight requirements for using a mobility scooter, but as above you should be able to read a car's registration number from a distance of 40ft (12.3m).
A minimum visual acuity of 6/24 is suggested. If you're unsure, we would recommend you check with your optician.
If you were involved in an accident and it was found that you had poor eyesight and were thus unable to judge distances, recognise hazards etc., the police and courts might deem it a contributory factor and you could be liable to pay compensation, regardless of fault.
No, you don't have to pay road tax for any scooter in the UK.
However, you must register your scooter with the DVLA if it is a Class 3 invalid carriage as detailed above.
No, but you must maintain your scooter in good working order so that it remains roadworthy.
Please contact or visit one of our showrooms for details.
No, there is no legal requirement to have insurance, but we would strongly recommend it.
Mobility scooter insurance typically includes personal liability cover in case you're involved in an accident, along with 24/7 breakdown recovery and cover for accidental damage, theft and vandalism, personal effects, personal injury, temporary hire, hospitalisation benefit and more.
Yes, but when driving a Class 3 scooter on a pavement or footpath, you must limit the maximum speed to 4mph.
It is against the law to drive faster than 4mph on a pedestrian pathway in the UK.
Class 2 scooters are limited to 4mph and can therefore only be driven on pavements and footpaths, except when crossing the road or when there isn't a pavement available.
Note, you must not drive any type of mobility scooter or powered wheelchair on cycle paths marked 'cycle only'.
If you own a Class 3 scooter, your scooter will come fitted with a maximum speed selector. This may be located in different places depending on the make and model of your mobility scooter.
To find out where it is located, look at the scooter's dashboard, check your user manual, Google the make and model or contact one of our showrooms for help.
Note, when you decide to drive your scooter on the road again, you should put your speed selector back to the maximum speed setting.
In the UK, legally you can only drive a mobility scooter in a public area if you:
As they only have seating for one person, it is illegal to carry passengers on your mobility scooter on a public road or footpath.
Although the law does not explicitly state that an adult carrying an infant in a sling or pouch is unlawful, even a small child standing in the footwell or sitting on your lap is not allowed.
Typically, mobility vehicles designed to carry two people cannot be used on the pavement or classed as Class 3 scooters for use on the road, because they don't meet the definition of an invalid carriage in UK law.
As such, within the UK, they can only be sold for use on private land with the owner's consent. Otherwise they would need to be classed as an electric vehicle, be road legal and would only be usable on the road with road tax, insurance and a driving licence.
Yes, all of the above also applies to powered wheelchairs intended for outdoor use.
Cumbria Mobility has taken every reasonable care to ensure that the information contained within this page is correct. However, we make no warranties of any kind, either expressed or implied, or representations as to its accuracy.
We can accept no liability or responsibility for any loss, damage or inconvenience due to any errors or omissions in the content of this site or caused by reliance on this information or any other information accessed via the site.
It is advised that you independently verify any information before acting or relying on it.