An elderly man driving a mobility scooter has died after colliding with a car in a regional town in Victoria.
The 95-year-old Maryborough resident was travelling through the town, located around 168 kilometres north-west of Melbourne, when he was struck by the vehicle at around 2.55pm on Thursday afternoon.
Police and emergency services were called to the scene at the intersection of Inkerman Street and Clarendon Street and the elderly man was air-lifted to hospital. He sadly died on arrival. Police say the driver of the car was uninjured.
The cause of the collision is unknown at this stage and a police investigation remains ongoing.
Anyone who witnessed the collision or anyone with dash cam footage of the incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
The accident comes amid calls for stricter rules around the use of mobility scooters. In 2018, a parliamentary committee recommended federal road and transport agencies begin researching the implantation of a regulatory system that would subject mobility scooter drivers to licensing, registration and insurance requirements.
Currently those who drive the electric vehicles don’t require a licence, insurance or health checks to be allowed behind the wheel.
Thursday’s tragic incident follows reports earlier this year of an elderly man who was stopped by police after he drove his mobility scooter down a busy freeway.
The man, who was 92 according to The Daily Mail, was caught driving his scooter down Melbourne’s busy Monash Freeway.
Dash cam footage captured by another driver – identified only as Bruce – and posted online, showed the gentleman merging onto the 100km/h road.
The driver recording the bizarre incident could be heard beeping his horn before shouting at the man to pull over repeatedly, saying: “Move over mate. You’re on the freeway … you’re not supposed to be on the freeway.”
However, the mobility scooter driver continued on his way and Bruce could be heard contacting the police who arrived within minutes and pulled over the man.
The shocking footage showed large lorries and coaches zooming past the elderly man who kept swerving to the edge of the freeway, as he drove along in the left hand lane, as Bruce drove slowly behind him with his hazard lights on as a warning to other traffic.
It was shared on Facebook by the group Dash Cam Owners Australia, and comments flooded in from people who praised Bruce for his quick thinking which prevented other unsuspecting drivers from approaching the elderly man at full speed.
One person wrote: “Excellent work, Bruce! May have saved more than one life there. Kudos to you.” Another wrote: “Good to see there is still some humanity around…..you did well to keep him safe in a very unsafe situation, also good to see Vic Pol on the scene straight away.”
While a third said: “Great work by the camera car you saved this guys life for sure.”