A movement to regulate personal mobility vehicles in B.C. has some wondering how that might affect things in South Surrey/White Rock given the area's large number of motorized scooters.
Following on a recent motion in Sidney to look at regulating the vehicles, the Union of B.C. Municipalities (UBCM) will consider a proposal in September to recommend a mandatory licensing regime for the people who use motorized wheelchairs and scooters.
But White Rock Coun. and acting mayor Grant Meyer isn't sure how well regulation would go down in the area, considering the high amount of users.
"At first thought, I don't know if you need more red tape and regulations and paper work," said Meyer. "There are definitely a lot in White Rock and all over the town centre that we share with Surrey."
Meyer himself has never been hit by somebody driving a scooter too fast, but he's been around when others have.
"I've seen people getting yelled at by others to slow down but I've never been hit by one or had my foot run over," he said. However, Meyer did admit that people need to exercise common sense when operating said vehicles, especially in crowded areas like Semiahmoo Mall in South Surrey.
"You'd think that before you bought any equipment that's motorized you'd at least get a quick lesson on it and making sure you can operate it in a safe manner," he said. "I don't think that's unreasonable."
And that's exactly in line with what Keith Dimelow, owner of Save-On Scooters in South Surrey, already does.
"If you come in today to buy a scooter I have a course out in the back that I take people on," he said. "I do a test, it takes me about seven or eight minutes and in that time I can tell if the customer is cognitively able to use that scooter or not."
If that customer doesn't appear to have the ability to adequately operate the vehicle, Dimelow will then take their family members aside and explain that he's unable to sell this person a scooter.
"I do it discretely. I tell it to their family members, 'This person can't handle this,'" he said. "It's totally different from driving a car."
Dimelow said some sort of regulation might be a good thing, so long as an entity like ICBC doesn't get involved. Rather, Dimelow would like to see a standardized, test similar to what he already does at his store, practiced around the province.
"Something to check for eyesight, depth perception, colour blindness wouldn't be a bad idea," said Dimelow.
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