In April, Fish Insurance was proud to exhibit at Naidex 2018, Europe’s largest and most established disability, independent living and rehabilitation exhibition.
Fish was among 300 industry leaders which showcased products and services to an audience of over 12,000 visitors. As well as existing product ranges, a whole host of companies demonstrated a wide range of new innovations to further enhance the lives of people living with physical disabilities in the future.
Fish unveiled its brand-new Safety Assessment Track with assistance from partners TPG Disabled Aids and Kymco Healthcare. The track provided a variety of artificial off-road terrain, ramps and obstacles for drivers to test their skills and receive guidance on how to use their equipment safely.
John Garrard, Fish Insurance’s Managing Director was delighted with the response. He said: “Our main focus in making the track available to visitors was so that they could gain important safety knowledge. We also found that it gave peace of mind to prospective buyers about purchasing a scooter. Over the two days we had 150 attendees who took part in the assessment generating a huge amount of positive feedback and enthusiasm.”
The track enabled people to use either their own scooter or the equipment provided by Kymco Healthcare, with specialist assessors from TPG Disabled Aids providing guidance on their skills and abilities.
John added: “As the leading providers of mobility scooter insurance we recognise that safety for both scooter owners and pedestrians is a growing concern. As the number of mobility scooters increase across the UK, unfortunately, so too does the number of accidents.
We believe a standard assessment should be introduced to encourage responsible scooter ownership. We believe that our track raises awareness of the importance of training.”
Currently, there is no legal requirement to have a permit to drive a mobility scooter, however it is very important to learn the basics. A key aspect of scooter safety is to always be aware of the people around you, to minimise potential accidents.
John added: “The overwhelming feedback we received from the visitors to our stand clearly illustrated that training centres should be more widely available to practice skills and increase awareness of road safety.”
This view was supported by a number of healthcare professionals, such as occupational therapists. Many clearly recognise that mobility aids are a lifeline for a growing number of people, however the lack of training options can cause problems in the long run.
Also, many people were unaware of the insurance implications resulting from an accident. Our team explained that if a scooter user has an accident without liability cover, they could face a large financial bill arising from both the damage to their scooter and third party costs. The reality is that if a pedestrian is injured they may raise a claim against the driver with subsequent liability for compensation and legal fees.
To minimise the number of potential accidents, adequate training and easy access to information is vital. Wheelchair and scooter owners must feel competent and confident when using their vehicles.
John concluded: “It was a great opportunity to speak to a huge variety of people and gain candid and invaluable feedback. And we were pleased that our Safety Assessment Track was so popular.
“Over the two days, we received a constant stream of positive feedback and we’re looking forward to being at Naidex 2019 with our Safety Assessment Track helping consumers gain the guidance they need in responsible powered wheelchair and scooter ownership.”
Fish will continue to champion the safe use of mobility equipment and endeavour to work with their partners to run awareness training soon.
If you want to get involved or find out more about how you can work with Fish, contact the team on 0333 331 3950.
This article was originally published by THIIS Magazine