Other Power-Driven Mobility Device


New member
I got this from a guy on the Rhino Forum and was wondering if anyone else has any information on this?

The Department of Justice has issued revised ADA Title II (state and local government programs) and Title III (private businesses, a.k.a. places of public accommodation) regulations which took effect March 15, 2011. These regulations provide a definition of a wheelchair and other power-driven mobility devices and add additional provisions identifying where they can be used. (FCR §35.104, §35.137, §36.104, §36.311)
Other Power-Driven Mobility Device (OPDMD)

An OPDMD is any mobility device powered by batteries, fuel, or other engines that is used by individuals with mobility disabilities for the purpose of locomotion, whether or not it was designed primarily for use by individuals with mobility disabilities. OPDMDs may include golf cars, electronic personal assistance mobility devices, such as the Segway ® Personal Transporter (PT), or any mobility device that is not a wheelchair, which is designed to operate in areas without defined pedestrian routes.
Covered entities must make reasonable modifications in their policies, practices, or procedures to permit individuals with mobility disabilities to use OPDMDs unless the entity can demonstrate that the class of OPDMDs cannot be operated in accordance with legitimate safety requirements adopted by the entity.

Covered entities must assess the following factors to determine whether a particular OPDMD can be allowed in a specific facility as a reasonable modification:
The type, size, weight, dimensions, and speed of the device.
The facility’s volume of pedestrian traffic (which may vary at different times of the day, week, month, or year).
The facility’s design and operational characteristics (e.g., whether its service, program, or activity is conducted indoors, its square footage, the density and placement of stationary devices, and the availability of storage for the device, if requested by the user).
Whether legitimate safety requirements can be established to permit the safe operation of the OPDMD in the specific facility.
Whether the use of the OPDMD creates a substantial risk of serious harm to the immediate environment or natural or cultural resources, or poses a conflict with Federal land management laws and regulations.

Covered entities shall not ask an individual using a wheelchair or OPDMD questions about the nature and extent of the individual’s disability. Covered entities may ask a person using an OPDMD to provide a credible assurance that the mobility device is required because of the person’s mobility disability. If the covered entity permits the use of a class of OPDMDs by individuals with mobility disabilities, they shall accept the following as credible assurance:
Presentation of a valid, State-issued, disability parking placard or card, or other State-issued proof of disability. A valid disability placard or card is one that is presented by the individual to whom it was issued and is otherwise in compliance with the State of Issuance’s requirements.
A verbal statement, not contradicted by observable fact, that the OPDMD is being used by a person with a mobility disability.
On the DOJ site (DEFINITIONS OF “WHEELCHAIR” AND “OTHER POWER-DRIVEN MOBILITY DEVICES”), they have Questions and answers. The one that applies to us is number 18:

Question 18: Should devices with combustible engines (e.g., ATV’s) be considered “other power-driven mobility devices,” and when would using such a device be a fundamental alteration? Response: Off-Highway Vehicles (OHV’s, a category which includes but is not limited to All-Terrain Vehicles or ATV’s) are properly to be considered in the category of “other power-driven mobility devices.” Each type of device should be considered on a case-by-case basis, applying the factors DOJ has set forth balancing the need for the device for access against fundamental alteration and direct threat. The requirement that entities develop policies in advance is a good idea. The proposed factors are generally good, but some adjustments to the proposed DOJ factors are needed:

Factor 1: “Dimensions, weight and speed” should be addressed in commentary to say the appropriateness of the device under the circumstances is what covered entities should be considering (e.g., a much larger device may be okay in a public park, but not a small governmental office.)

Factor 2: “The risk of potential harm to others” is too broad. It needs to be restricted to the definition of “direct threat,” which prohibits determinations made based on unfounded stereotypes, generalizations, and prejudices.