Chapter 1 provides some background to the committee's inquiry and clarifies some of the terminology that is commonly used in relation to mobility scooters and motorised wheelchairs.
In undertaking this inquiry, the committee has become aware of the efforts currently being made by a number of organisations – including Australian road transport and traffic agencies – as they work toward the development of a nationally consistent approach to mobility devices. This chapter outlines the committee's approach to the inquiry, which is informed by evidence provided by these organisations, and other key stakeholders.
Chapter 2 provides an overview of recent inquiries, including those undertaken by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), and the NSW Parliament. The chapter also examines the issue of both historic and current reporting of accidents, injuries and deaths attributed to mobility scooters. The chapter also examines the findings of a recent national survey of mobility scooter users, jointly undertaken by a number of stakeholder groups, including the ACCC, the National Roads and Motorists' Association (NRMA), CHOICE, EnableNSW and Flinders University.
Austroads and the National Transport Commission (NTC) are currently involved in developing a consistent, national framework focused on informing the use of motorised mobility devices and improving the safety of both mobility scooters and motorised wheelchairs. The process currently being undertaken by these two organisations is also outlined in Chapter 2.
Chapter 3 describes the current regulations governing the use of mobility scooters throughout Australia, and summarises the state and territory road rules which determine which mobility devices are permitted to be used on roads, footpaths and bike-paths. Also outlined in this chapter is the process by which Australian Transport Standards and Australian Road Rules (ARRs) are developed, maintained and administered.
Chapter 4 provides a summary of the committee's inquiry, including the key issues raised by stakeholders. The chapter also provides a summary of the committee's key findings, its primary views and its recommendations.