August 2, 2016 5.05 pm This story is over 91 months old

McDonald’s contradicts itself after Skegness mobility scooter drive-thru row

Same scooter, but different service

McDonald’s has put itself in an embarrassing position after contradicting itself over whether staff should allow mobility scooters through the drive-thru.

This follows the arrest of a man in Skegness who was refused service at McDonald’s drive-thru on his mobility scooter. He was then charged with driving a carriage under the influence.

However, last year, McDonald’s workers in Wiltshire served a pensioner using the same model of mobility scooter at the drive-thru window.

McDonald’s said today on this issue: “Following advice taken from independent parties and company safety risk assessments, it is our policy only road worthy motor vehicles should be served in our drive-thru lanes.

“This takes into account a number of considerations including space available in the lanes and the heights of ordering points and service hatches.

“Mobility scooter users are invited to enter into our restaurants and order food at service points which are more convenient for them, and most importantly, safer for the customer and crew when selling food.”

The Skegness man was denied service at the McDonald's drive-through in Skegness, and police were called. Photo: Emma Aque

The Skegness man was denied service at the McDonald’s drive-through in Skegness, and police were called. Photo: Emma Aque

Conflicting policies, just one year apart

In 2015 a similar incident in which a pensioner used the drive-thru in Wiltshire on a mobility scooter saw McDonald’s make a contradictory statement.

Photo: Jonathon Owens

A pensioner from Wiltshire was served at the McDonald’s drive-thru window in 2015 to the amusement of other customers. Photo: Jonathon Owens

McDonald’s said at the time: “Our drive-thru lanes are suitable for safe use by cars, vans, motorbikes, mopeds, and mobility scooters designed for road use and the restaurant team were delighted to serve the gentleman.

“Safety is a top priority in our drive-thrus so customers in mobility scooters not deemed road-worthy will be served by the staff inside our restaurants.”

Both mobility scooters used in the McDonald’s drive-thrus appear to be the same model, just different colours.

When asked about the conflicting statements, McDonald’s told Lincolnshire Reporter: “It has always been our policy to serve those in roadworthy vehicles only when using Drive Thru lanes and it is left to the judgement of serving staff to ascertain this criteria.

“It was felt in this instance, the mobility scooter was not roadworthy, nor was the operator safe to be in the drive thru area.”