Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

User avatar
Velocio
Posts: 264
Joined: 12 Jan 2007, 4:22pm
Location: Southsea
Contact:

Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby Velocio » 4 Sep 2020, 7:30pm

I thought electric scooters were illegal but since lockdown I've seen them increasingly everywhere. On roads, on pavements, in precincts, overtaking me when I'm cycling, undertaking me when I'm cycling. Some with 2 or 3 people on board, some with children and toddlers on board. No lights, no helmets, no warning bell, no hi-viz clothing. Very often going at speeds well in excess of 15mph. They're a menace! With winter and darker days and nights fast approaching I fear there will be carnage in the streets! You don't hear them, you won't see them! In a city where I live 5 miles by 3 miles with nearly a quarter of a million people swelled by 20,000 university students returning it's a disaster I fear that may just happen!
...ever cycle ...ever CTC

mumbojumbo
Posts: 354
Joined: 1 Aug 2018, 8:18pm

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby mumbojumbo » 4 Sep 2020, 7:48pm

Do you mean illegal in all or in some circumstances?I note you live on Portsea Island,which is a lawless district,full of petty criminals shouting"Oi mush!" at each other across Fratton Road. never see them up this way but all OAPs run round on battery bikes in 10 layers of clothing.

User avatar
[XAP]Bob
Posts: 17665
Joined: 26 Sep 2008, 4:12pm

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 4 Sep 2020, 7:55pm

They aren't illegal, but they are also not legal for riding on the footway, or on the road.
Legality on a bridleway is not something I'd like to comment on.

Private land they're obviously fine.

There is a current "trial" which seems designed to fail, so there may well be some "authorised" e-scooters out there.

No lights, no helmets, no warning bell, no hi-viz clothing


None of those are legal requirements for a daytime cyclist, why would an e scooter be any different.
And frankly if you can't see them coming then lights and high viz won't make a difference, you still won't be able to see them. They probably all carry a warning device (the rider's voice) but use of that is as likely to make you jump into their path as anything else. Talking about magic hats in that tone is why the helmet ghetto exists.
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

mattsccm
Posts: 3398
Joined: 28 Nov 2009, 9:44pm

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby mattsccm » 4 Sep 2020, 9:38pm

They are on public land unless hired with all that stuff involved. The few I have have been a flaming pain as they are ridden by kids all over the shop with the usual kids abandon plus some wdhat more speed.

Grandad
Posts: 1188
Joined: 22 Nov 2007, 12:22am
Location: Kent

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby Grandad » 4 Sep 2020, 10:03pm


User avatar
mjr
Posts: 16034
Joined: 20 Jun 2011, 7:06pm
Location: Norfolk or Somerset, mostly
Contact:

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby mjr » 4 Sep 2020, 10:18pm

The ones around here mostly cause no trouble, except the few being ridden by yobs who would probably be riding mini motos in years gone by and at least these don't drown everyone in fumes.

They are mostly illegal in this country but the law is being a slow and stubborn ass again.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

mercalia
Posts: 13997
Joined: 22 Sep 2013, 10:03pm
Location: london South

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby mercalia » 4 Sep 2020, 10:18pm



its a shame the coppers in London aint more proactive.

User avatar
squeaker
Posts: 3673
Joined: 12 Jan 2007, 11:43pm
Location: Sussex

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby squeaker » 5 Sep 2020, 11:17am

What an interesting case (my bold):
Paul Shingleton, representing Doherty, said it wasn't until several months later his client received a court summons on charges of driving while disqualified and without insurance.
given that the charges relate to the use of an e-scooter on the highway...
"42"

thirdcrank
Posts: 29423
Joined: 9 Jan 2007, 2:44pm

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby thirdcrank » 5 Sep 2020, 11:50am

From Grandad's link:

It emerged during a hearing at Margate Magistrates Court today that previous to the offence he had been told by police officers - who had stopped him in Broadstairs for selfies - that he was fine to ride it as long as he stayed on the pavement.

PH
Posts: 9393
Joined: 21 Jan 2007, 12:31am
Location: Derby
Contact:

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby PH » 5 Sep 2020, 12:04pm

The genie is out of the bottle, there's no putting it back, as always the legislators were to slow to react and now even the most basic regulation seems unworkable. There's huge multi million businesses built up around the things, the Pure Electric retail chain is an example, it isn't going away.
My experience is similar to mjr's where they "mostly cause no trouble" and the troublesome ones are ridden by troublemakers and they'd be that regardless. What's interesting to watch is how the gap between scooters and e-bikes will be bridged, it wouldn't make sense for one to be permitted as a powered vehicle and the other to be restricted to assistance. My view is that I'd like to see some regulation about speed, braking and any other safety concerns, then have a single class of personal electric vehicle.

User avatar
[XAP]Bob
Posts: 17665
Joined: 26 Sep 2008, 4:12pm

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 5 Sep 2020, 12:42pm

PH wrote:The genie is out of the bottle, there's no putting it back, as always the legislators were to slow to react and now even the most basic regulation seems unworkable. There's huge multi million businesses built up around the things, the Pure Electric retail chain is an example, it isn't going away.
My experience is similar to mjr's where they "mostly cause no trouble" and the troublesome ones are ridden by troublemakers and they'd be that regardless. What's interesting to watch is how the gap between scooters and e-bikes will be bridged, it wouldn't make sense for one to be permitted as a powered vehicle and the other to be restricted to assistance. My view is that I'd like to see some regulation about speed, braking and any other safety concerns, then have a single class of personal electric vehicle.

no - there are various classes of personal vehicle, and we absolutely don't want misplaced regulations applying to all of them.

there should be a catchall class of personal electric vehicle with less than ~200W and a top powered speed of ~10-15? to accommodate any small vehicle - that wouldn't need insurance, or a license, or any specific safety wear, but could require lights/reflectors (though they'll be a challenge on most scooters).
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

Jdsk
Posts: 2213
Joined: 5 Mar 2019, 5:42pm

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby Jdsk » 5 Sep 2020, 1:10pm


PH
Posts: 9393
Joined: 21 Jan 2007, 12:31am
Location: Derby
Contact:

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby PH » 5 Sep 2020, 1:59pm

[XAP]Bob wrote:no - there are various classes of personal vehicle, and we absolutely don't want misplaced regulations applying to all of them.
there should be a catchall class of personal electric vehicle with less than ~200W and a top powered speed of ~10-15? to accommodate any small vehicle - that wouldn't need insurance, or a license, or any specific safety wear, but could require lights/reflectors (though they'll be a challenge on most scooters).

OK, I could have explained it better, but that's pretty much what I meant. In particular that vehicles with the same capability were not differentiated by whether they were e-bike or scooter or something else.

User avatar
Si
Moderator
Posts: 15133
Joined: 5 Jan 2007, 7:37pm

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby Si » 6 Sep 2020, 11:23am

They are shortly to start a scheme here whereby use of them is legal if...on private land with owner's permission as already discussed.....OR you hire one from the council and follow a number of rules: IIRC they include: can only be used within the designated city centre (ish) zone (power turns off when you leave it), 5mph if in a pedestrian zone, can go on road but only those roads with a limit up to 30mph, you need a driving license (full or prov) to hire one. Council advise is to use them on cycle routes.

The local rag has already tried a hatchet job by comparing the cost per mile of a scooter to that of a car, only it used the cost per mile in the 5mph ped zone compared to the cost of a car on the road.....which is obviously nonsense as if you tried to drive a car in the ped zone the cost would be somewhat higher due to all of the fines that you would get.

I think hire charges were something like £1 to unlock then 20p per minute, or £40 per month unlimited use (including taking it home if you want). there are reductions for key workers and those on benefits etc.

The scooters have some copperish coating on the controls that kills 99.9% of viruses. Have not seen anything saying if you need to wear a plastic hat or not. Edit: apparently you do need a plastic hat.....which means that either you have to carry your own around with you all the time on the off chance that you might want to use a scooter, or you need to hire one with the scooter and catch a good dose of cv19 off it.

Jdsk
Posts: 2213
Joined: 5 Mar 2019, 5:42pm

Re: Aren't Electric Scooters illegal?

Postby Jdsk » 6 Sep 2020, 11:31am

The Tees Valley trial has already started.

Jonathan