Watch: Drivers start your engines, for Havelock North mobility scooter training

Watch: Drivers start your engines, for Havelock North mobility scooter training

See them rolling, in Havelock North – learning to ride their scooters safely.

A group of residents at Summerset in the Vines are now more confident on the roads and footpaths of the village after a free mobility scooter training session organised by Safer Hastings partners.

Starting with a loop around the residential facility, about 15 riders then went out onto the footpath of Te Mata Rd last week for a jaunt down to the Four Square where the owner kindly came out with lemonade iceblocks for the travellers.

Safer Hastings chair Eileen Lawson said the exercise was designed for people who did not have a lot of experience riding a scooter.

“Up to 80 per cent of mobility scooter owners at Summerset in the Vines have got them second-hand so they don’t get any training on how to use them,” she said.

“We’re running this day as a pilot with the hope that it will give scooter users more confidence, and ultimately independence – making it safer and easier for them to get out and about on the footpaths.”

Watch: Drivers start your engines, for Havelock North mobility scooter training

A group of mobility scooter riding residents at Summerset in the Vines took to the streets of Havelock North as part of a new safety training programme. Photo / Hastings District Council

The course helped participants socialise and gain more confidence on their rides, with guidance from the Mobility Centre team along with Police, Safer Hastings, Age Concern Havelock North, and Hastings District Council transportation team representatives.

The scooters were also tested for roadworthiness, with Lawson adding for those more used to riding, it served as a refresher and good opportunity for maintenance checks.

Age Concern Havelock North manager Carol Winters said it was “really valuable” spending the time to make people feel safer on their scooters especially as the roads were becoming increasingly busy around the district.

“If we can help them gain confidence, there are so many benefits – it gets them out of their house and immediate environment and helps them remain connected with others and to socialise.”

Judy Clarkson, a resident at Summerset in the Vines, was one of the first in the complex to get a scooter and is already pretty used to it.

“I love it – I’ve got a bad back and find walking pretty difficult – I use the scooter a lot and others have been watching me getting around and thought ‘that’s what I need’.”

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