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UK government advised to consider new private e-scooter legislation

79 days ago

2 minutes

Source: European Transport Safety Council

European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) member, PACTS, has set out recommendations for private e-scooter use in the UK if the vehicles are to become legal. This includes mandatory helmet use and a minimum rider age of 16. Recommendations were based on a nine-month research project.

At present, e-scooter use in the UK is limited to city-specific rental schemes. Private usage is restricted to private land, despite this over a million such vehicles have entered the UK in recent years and it is not uncommon to see them in a public setting. Many users are either ignorant of or ignore the ban on public use and face fines or confiscation.

Following its research, PACTS has published a comprehensive report looking at many aspects of e-scooter design and use which took into account research and experience from across the rest of Europe, where e-scooters are legal in most countries. This is seen by PACTS as the ideal legal scenario in which to launch private e-scooter ownership in the UK. Recommendations are as follows:

  • Maximum possible top speed of between 10mph-12.5mph (16-20km/h)
  • Maximum continuous rated motor power 250 W
  • Anti-tampering mechanisms should be included in the construction. Tampering should be prohibited by law
  • A maximum unladen weight of 20kg
  • A minimum front wheel size of 12 inches (30.5cm) and minimum rear wheel size of 10 inches (25.5cm)
  • Two independently controlled braking devices
  • Lighting to be mandatory at all times
  • An audible warning device to be mandatory
  • Helmet wearing to be mandatory
  • Rider age limit of at least 16 years
  • Riding on the pavement to be prohibited
  • Carrying of a passenger to be prohibited
  • Drink driving, dangerous or careless riding, and mobile phone use to be prohibited
  • In-person rider training recommended
  • e-scooters should be regulated as motor vehicles
  • Public liability insurance for riders recommended
  • The rider should inform the police if there is a collision involving an injury 
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