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Welcome to UK Wheelchairs - the home of value and quality

At what age should powerchairs be available ?

We were encouraged to see the proposed change in the law to allow under 14s to use motorised vehicles including electric wheelchairs.

The government is under pressure to make the change to help transform young people quality of life by allowing the use of electric wheelchairs where suitable. The cut off weight where a motorised vehicle becomes a car is currently 150Kgs. Most electric wheelchairs are far lighter than this and so should be made legal for any person with a sever disability to use one.

When is an electric wheelchair no longer an electric wheelchair ?

At the moment it is illegal for people under the age of 14 to use mobility scooters and electric chairs. In the meanwhile, any electric wheelchair weighing more than 150kg is classified as a car and, therefore, can only be driven by people over the age of 17 who hold a driving licence.

Mr Burley, a conservative MP, stated "The age limit is very arbitrary. It's not fair that a 13-and-a-half-year-old with a degenerative disease can't have the level of freedom that the electric wheelchair would provide."

Ten-minute rule bills do not normally result in a change in government policy, but Mr Burley said he was hopeful of an alteration in the law for Class 3 chairs, as transport minister Norman Baker and Maria Miller, minister for disabled people, had attended the debate.

We agree with him and believe that it makes sense to make electric wheelchairs available, where suitable, to users under the age of fourteen. Do let us know your thoughts.

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