Tandem mobility scooters are no different from a conventional driver-only model, other than their stretched chassis and additional seat. However, they are not currently legal to use on British roads or pavements.
We wrote to the Department for Transport to ask why and this is what they said:
Tandem mobility scooters cannot legally be used on pavements or roads in Britain. In law, a mobility scooter and a powered wheelchair are both considered to be an ‘invalid carriage’, defined under the Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1970. The specific definition is: Section 20 (2) “invalid carriage” means a vehicle, whether mechanically propelled or not, constructed or adapted for use for the carriage of one person, being a person suffering from some physical defect or disability.
Tandem mobility scooters: Invaluable lifeline for older couples
It seems obvious why tandem mobility scooters can be so useful for older couples – especially when one person is no longer able to operate a scooter on their own – and yet the Department does not have any plans to amend the legislation to make them lawful.
We’d like to help get the law changed if we can. If you would be happy to provide us with a case study – by telling your own story about how a tandem mobility scooter would help you – please get in touch by leaving a comment at the bottom of this page. No need to leave contact details as we’ll be able to see your email address without it becoming public.
What type of mobility scooter is legal?
There are two categories of mobility scooter. Class 2 mobility scooters can’t be used on the road (except where there isn’t a pavement) and have a maximum speed of 4 mph. This type of mobility scooter does not need to be registered. Class 3 mobility scooters can be used on the road, and have a maximum speed of 4 mph off the road, and 8 mph on the road.
A report commissioned by the Department for Transport found that many suppliers of mobility scooters fail to inform their customers of the legal requirement to register these larger class 3 scooters with the DVLA. To register a class 3 mobility scooter, complete form V55/4 for new vehicles, or V55/5 for used vehicles.
Insurance for mobility scooters
The policy includes everything you need to keep you moving should your mobility scooter be stolen, vandalised or damaged accidentally. At no extra cost, you also benefit from breakdown cover to take you home if your mobility scooter suffers a flat battery, mechanical fault or puncture – we’ll even pay up to £100 to get the puncture repaired.
For added reassurance, every policy includes £2m third party cover to protect you against claims for injury or damage caused while using your mobility scooter or powered chair. And should you be unfortunate enough to crash your scooter, our insurance policy includes personal accident cover up to £20,000.
The ethical choice
The ETA was established in 1990 as an ethical provider of green, reliable travel services. Over 30 years on, we continue to offer cycle insurance , breakdown cover and mobility scooter insurance while putting concern for the environment at the heart of all we do.
The Good Shopping Guide judges us to be the UK’s most ethical provider.