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New French E-scooter Rules

Since 25 October, France has introduced new rules for non-type-approved personal light electric vehicles (PLEVs). According to a spokesperson of the French Ministry of Transport, driving forces behind this revision was the lack of a well-designed legal status for these vehicles and safety concerns on public roads.

Focus of the revision are rules for e-scooters, however they will also apply to hoverboards, monowheels and self-balancing vehicles. As a result, these vehicles now have a legal status in the French highway code (Décret n° 2019-1082, art. 10). This status results in rules on place on the road, parking, technical requirements and sanctions in case of infringement.

The following rules apply since 25 October 2019.

  • A minimum age of 12 years for using these vehicles
  • A maximum design speed of 25 km/h when used on public roads
  • Only one rider per device
  • Using a mobile phone and/or headphones while driving is forbidden
  • Driving on pavements is forbidden, however parking is allowed
  • PLEVs in urban areas can go either on cycle paths or on the road, provided the maximum speed is no more than 50 km/h. Outside urban areas, they must go on cycle paths.
  • Using a helmet is recommended but not obligatory.
  • Riders must wear reflective clothing during the day in case of reduced visibility and at night
  • Individual owners of PLEVs must undertake an insurance. Owners of a free-floating sharing system must underwrite an insurance for their customers.

Furthermore, some technical requirements come into force on 1 July 2020. From that date on, every e-scooter needs to comply with the following requirements:

  • Front- and rear lights
  • Rear & side retro reflection
  • A bell
  • A braking system

Disobeying the new rules could results in a fine of up to €1,500 if your e-scooter has a design speed of more than 25 km/h. More than one person on your e-scooter results in a fine of €35 or €135 in case of driving on pavements.

The link to the legal revision is here: link to Official Journal of France.

Sources: Link to Official Journal of France & Overview of the revision & BBC

Photo credits: pixabay

Annick Roetynck

Annick is the Manager of LEVA-EU, with decades of experience in two-wheeled and light electric mobility.

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Annick Roetynck

Annick is the Manager of LEVA-EU, with decades of experience in two-wheeled and light electric mobility.

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