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How fast do mobility scooters go?

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If a mobility scooter is your main mode of transport, you may be wondering exactly how fast you’re allowed to go while driving around in public. If you’re in a rush, you may feel the urge to pick up speed to get where you’re going quickly. Before you do this, it’s important to understand the laws and safety recommendations for your mobility scooter.

Mobility scooter speed limit

Under Australian Law, mobility scooters must not exceed 10km/hr on flat ground.
Why? Because mobility scooters are classified as pedestrians, and therefore must not be able to travel at a speed that puts other pedestrians in danger.

Adjusting speed around pedestrians

The average walking pace of a pedestrian is around 2-3km/hr, so it’s important to adjust your speed depending on your location. For example, if you’re driving alone on a footpath and can safely travel 10km/hr then you should be okay to do so. If you’re in a busy shopping centre, however, it would be wise to drop your speed to match the people walking around you.

10km/h speed sign

Fast mobility scooter

Can I modify my scooter to make it go faster?

No, you cannot modify your mobility scooter to make it go faster. Any mobility scooter that travels above 10km/hr is classified as a vehicle and needs to be registered as such. If you’re found to have modified your scooter to increase its speed, you may be subject to legal action.

This happened in 2019 after a man acquired an NDIS funded modification to his wheelchair that made it travel over the legal 10km/hr. You can read the full article here.

There was also a case in Western Australia where a man modified and tried to sell a mobility scooter so that it could travel up to 72km/hr – which would be illegal to drive.

If you want to make sure the scooter you’re purchasing is legal, it’s best to buy through an authorised supplier such as Hello Mobility Queensland. Not only will you be confident you’re getting a genuine product, but we’ll also be around to answer any questions you have and make sure it’s the perfect scooter for you.

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Avoiding mobility scooter accidents by following the speed limit

Unfortunately, there have been many instances of people being injured by mobility scooters. Mobility scooter accidents affect both people on foot and those driving the scooters.

According to the Australian Competition & Consumer Commision, “At least 62 Australians—mostly in their 60s to 90s—have died from mobility scooter collisions or falls.” In addition, “Hundreds of older people go to hospital each year suffering serious head wounds and injuries to their hips and limbs after losing control of their mobility scooter or falling from the scooter. Many of these accidents happen on roads.”

Accidents often happen when the driver loses control of the mobility scooter. While there are many reasons this could happen, speed is a contributing factor.

There have also been cases of pedestrians being hit by mobility scooters, as was the case in 2017 when former Nationals Senator John Williams’ wife was struck by a scooter and needed a hip replacement. He then called for the mobility scooter speed limit to be reduced to 6km/hr, which ultimately did not happen.

As a result, it’s important for people who use mobility scooters to be aware of their surroundings and stick to the 10km/hr speed limit, dropping their speed even further if necessary.

What if my mobility scooter is too slow?

If you’ve noticed that your mobility scooter has slowed down significantly or isn’t accelerating/breaking properly, it may require a service or battery replacement. It’s also worth checking the tyres to make sure they are fully inflated and aren’t the cause of your issue.

If you notice anything unusual going on with your scooter, the best thing to do is call your authorised scooter supplier for advice. Your safety is important, so it’s always better to talk to an expert rather than risk it. Here at Hello Mobility QLD, we provide ongoing service to all our customers and are dedicated to giving you fast, efficient and reliable maintenance.

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