Author Topic: Where did the name "Mobility Scooter" come from? Who used it first?  (Read 3468 times)


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  • Collecting the history of mobility scooters in NZ
I have a question
For years I have been trying to find where the term  "Mobility Scooter" came from and when was it first used in an advert.
These days most people call anything that drives on the footpath a mobility scooter.
In the early days they were named after their manufacture.

Who coined this name?
Did the name just evolve from a child’s scooter
or a petrol scooter.
I am really interested to know what anyone’s thoughts are and would certainly appreciate any comments.
Tony McCarthy

Rusty Chrome (Malcolm Parker)

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Re: Where did the name "Mobility Scooter" come from? Who used it first?
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2018, 01:57:23 pm »
I would guess it evolved in the 1980's from the more general term "mobility aids" that some disabled equipment retailers used to term such things as wheelchairs and walking sticks etc. Electric (and otherwise) scooters/wheelchairs have been around a lot longer but somewhere around the 1980s various types that were specifically low speed, intended for elderly/disabled people and of a size that could fit through a doorway became more and more common place and affordable. Lord Snowden came up with what most people would recognise as a mobilty scooter in the early 1970s, but called it the Chairmobile. The Oxford English Dictionary shows the term used in September 1989 in the USA "Rascal electric mobility scooter for the handicapped."
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