NORTH WALES POLICE are urging people to know the law surrounding Electric scooters or E-scooters before purchasing or using one.
E-scooters have increased in popularity over recent years, but there is a lot of confusion around where they can be used. They are currently only legal to ride on private land with the landowner’s permission, or as part of a Government trial.
The UK Government is currently taking part in ‘Future Transport Zone’ trials for e-scooter hire, with a view to making them legal to use on a road. However, at present, north Wales are NOT part of these trials.
Officers are reminding people that riding an e-scooter in public when it is not part of an authorised trial is against the law, and can result in penalty points, a fine and seizure of the vehicle.
E-scooters are classified as Personal Light Electric Vehicles (PLEVs), so they are treated as a motor vehicle and subject to the same legal requirements such as MOT, licensing, tax and insurance. As e-scooters don’t have number plates, signal ability and don’t always have a visible rear light, they can’t be used legally on the roads.
Sergeant Liam Ho of the Roads Policing Unit is urging local residents to familiarise themselves with the legislation. He said: “We understand that buying an e-scooter can be tempting, especially as you can buy them from many popular retailers.
“However, the current law is clear. You can buy one but you can’t ride it on a public road, cycle lane or pavement. E-scooters can only be used on private land with the permission of the landowner.
“With the summer months just around the corner we want to ensure that children and parents/carers understand the danger these machines pose to both the rider and pedestrians. Often, riders are not wearing a safety helmet and some e-scooters can reach speeds of up to 60mph – so it’s not hard to imagine what the result could be in the event of a collision.”
North Wales Police understand the public’s support for environmentally friendly modes of transport and want to work with the public to make sure that the roads are safe for everyone.
Sergeant Ho added: “We will continue to engage with the public to make them aware of the law regarding e-scooters and I would encourage parents and carers to ensure their children are following the guidelines correctly.
“If you own an e-scooter do not ride these machines in public places. Comply with the law for your own safety and the safety of others.
“Section 59 of the Police Reform Act allows police to give road users a warning if they are reported to have used their vehicle in a manner which causes alarm, distress or annoyance.
“We also have the powers to seize vehicles – please make sure you keep e-scooters on private land, with the landowner’s permission, to ensure this does not happen to you.”
Further information on the use of e-scooters is available here https://www.gov.uk/guidance/e-scooter-trials-guidance-for-users