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No change on Isle of Man’s mobility scooter bus ban until safety implications understood

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The Isle of Man’s infrastructure minister has informed residents that he will not change the rules regarding the use of mobility scooters on buses until he fully understands the safety implications of any changes.

The Government’s infrastructure minister Tim Baker has said that he will not change the rules on mobility scooters using buses until the safety implications are fully understood.

Speaking to the Island’s national radio station, Tim Baker, Infrastructure Minister for the Isle of Man, was asked to highlight exactly where in legislation class 2 scooters are banned from using the Island’s buses.

He said that the current fleet lacks the necessary restraints to safely carry passengers using such vehicles.

No change on Isle of Man’s mobility scooter bus ban until safety implications understood

Admitting that it is a complex issue, Mr Baker commented: “This is a complicated area. I am committed to the department for addressing it and coming forward with some proposals but I am not going to make commitments until I fully know the implications of those commitments and what effect it has on the safety of passenger transport on the island and the operation of the bus and coach service.”

This latest update comes after a leg amputee on the Isle of Man told of feeling let down in January after the island’s bus service, Bus Vannin, upheld its ban over the use of mobility scooters on its network following a two-month trial.

The Isle of Man Newspapers reported at the time that the bus company had banned mobility scooters because they can be unstable on buses with steep boarding and alighting gradients on some of the routes around the island.

An Isle of Man Transport spokesman said: “There was a trial over two months to understand the implications of carrying mobility scooters on buses. However, on our buses they have to travel unrestrained and this is unsafe for both mobility scooter users and other passengers.”

The spokesman said that its buses are built to European Vehicle Whole Type Approval standards, which exclude carrying mobility scooters and that it is working with the manufacturers on a future vehicle design.