As caution should always be taken by everyone while crossing roads, whether young or old, disabled or not, it’s essential to observe the dangers around you and to always find a suitable place to cross a road when possible and never to take chances.
It’s always better to wait longer to get across the road and get to the other side safely than to take a risk, trying to rush and putting yourself in unnecessary danger.
When using a mobility scooter that is suitable for pavement use only (apart from when crossing a road on it) it could be easy to get into the way of thinking that you have the right of way once reaching a zebra crossing and that stopping is maybe not necessary as with a walking pedestrian, but it would be wrong and very dangerous to think this way.
When you do approach a zebra crossing, you must stop completely, don’t just slow down with a view to trying to time the distance between traffic and trying to get across sooner, it’s way too risky to chance it like that.
Because you’re using a mobility scooter, it wont mean that traffic will automatically stop for you, just like some drivers wont slow down enough when approaching a zebra crossing and find themselves with the option of either braking too suddenly and too hard, which of course could lead to an accident or they end up carrying on straight through the crossing even though they should have and could have stopped if they were observing the situation properly.
Most of us at sometime in our lives have seen kids not stand and wait at crossings and just walk straight out, it’s like they know what the zebra crossing is for but for some reason feel invincible, it gives them a false sense of power and that they can control the traffic.
Of course there’s no guarantee of any vehicle stopping in time if a child or adult, disabled or not, decides to walk or roll out onto the road before it’s really safe to do so.
I have seen adults do the same at a zebra crossing, of course they should know better, yet every now and then one of them feels like superman or superwoman and point blank refuses to stand and wait and across they go, ignorant to the danger that they have just put themselves and motorists in.
As a mobility scooter is capable of having an odd moment, just like anything else, rolling forwards or backwards unexpectedly, a sudden loss of power or something else that suddenly affects the operation of it, it could put you in a frightening position if while you are taking a chance at a crossing your mobility scooter suddenly cuts out while part of the way across the road.
If traffic has already stopped for you and you are going across the road without panic and not rushing, then if your mobility scooter does malfunction and you suddenly have a loss of power, at least the traffic is already stationary for you, they cant do much else other than wait or if necessary, a kind motorist might get out of their vehicle to help you and to see what the problem is.
Any time that you approach a zebra crossing and basically any other area of a road to cross, treat it as you would as a walking pedestrian, don’t expect all drivers to be alert and only when you can see that the traffic has stopped completely on both sides should you then proceed forward, confident that all nearby traffic at the crossing is aware of you and possibly other members of the public crossing.
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