'I'd never do this': Why disabled drivers are furious at this photo

A mobility scooter has caused a stir at a Bunnings store in Victoria after it was found in a disabled parking bay.

Images of the small motorised device taking up a space at Bayswater Bunnings in Melbourne’s east were shared to Facebook on Thursday.

And it wasn’t long before its owner was slammed for their actions in the Australian Disability Parking Wall of Shame group.

“That is so selfish to take up a car park like that,” one person wrote.

“I have a mobility scooter, but I’d never do this,” another declared.

“Find this needless! Taking up a whole space [when they] could’ve easily parked up on the footpath,” a third user pointed out.

A Melbourne mobility scooter was blocking off a Bunnings disabled parking bay.
The mobility scooter was blocking off a Bunnings disabled parking bay in Melbourne. Source: Facebook/ Australian Disability Parking Wall of Shame

Mobility scooters should park on pavements

According to VicRoads, parking in a disabled bay, or any parking space designated for a road vehicle, is prohibited for mobility devices.

“People using these devices are considered pedestrians and therefore must obey the same road rules,” VicRoads say in their guidelines for mobility device usage.

This means mobility scooters must be used on footpaths at all times and, if not feasible, should travel on the road facing oncoming traffic and rejoin the walkway at the first possible chance.

A spokesperson for the Royal Automobile Club of Victoria (RACV) confirmed to Yahoo News Australia mobility scooters weren’t permitted to park in disabled bays.

They must instead be parked on the pavement with consideration to pedestrians’ access around their mobility device.

Having a disabled parking permit for a vehicle doesn’t allow its holder to then use it for a mobility scooter.

According to the Road Safety Act, mobility scooters are devices which cannot exceed 10km/h, whereas a ‘vehicle’ is defined as being able to exceed 10km/h and therefore able to use the space providing they have a permit.

The same ruling is in effect across Australia’s other states and territories, where mobility scooters aren’t considered roadworthy vehicles and subsequently shouldn’t be left in vehicle spaces.

Earlier this week, a Harvey Norman store came under fire after they used half of their disabled parking spaces for a pop-up sales tent.

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