E scooters are becoming more and more popular despite being illegal to ride on either the public roads or pathways created for pedestrians. This is because even if they are sold as toys, e scooters are motorised vehicles which must adhere to a wide range of safety and legal requirements, including:
- Having insurance
- Having valid road tax
- Meeting strict technical standards
- Having a legal licence plate
- Being registered with the Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) Being ridden by a properly qualified and registered rider
Although it is not illegal to sell e scooters, all retailers must make it clear to the purchaser of the legal requirements for use, which is currently restricted to private land and with the landowner’s permission, unless the e scooter is part of a controlled test programme.
Clearly, this makes the e scooter an impractical choice of transport. But legal aspects aside, are e scooters dangerous?
Why are e scooters dangerous to the rider?
In addition to the legal aspects* of their use, e scooters are still being used on roads and paths across the country and are proving to be dangerous to both the rider and pedestrians.
There are some very notable reasons why riding an e scooter can pose dangers to the rider. These dangers include:
Potholes in road or on pavements can instantly cause an accident
Potholes can be very difficult to see, and if an e scooter hits one at speed it is likely to throw the rider causing injury. There is the added danger that the rider can be thrown into the path of other traffic such as cars or trucks.
No or limited suspension causes accidents
E scooter design does not meet the higher standards required of Electric Motorbikes and Electric Mopeds. This is noticeable when considering the poor level of suspension which restricts the ease of control for the rider. If the rider loses control, they could end up being injured in an accident. Electric Motorbikes and Electric Mopeds are designed to the same safety control level of the traditional petrol driven motorbikes. Whereas e scooters have no regulated standards.
Wheels are inadequate for their top speeds when ridden on poor road and pavement surfaces
In addition to the lack of suspension, e scooters are fitted with completely inappropriate wheels which, when ridden on poor road or pavement surfaces can have the same problem with control and accidents
E scooters are nearly always equipped with cable brakes rather than hydraulic brakes. Not only are these less powerful but are much more susceptible to corrosion and need regular and thorough maintenance to maintain their efficiency. All but the most careful riders ignore this requirement and as a result put themselves and other in serious danger.
These examples of the dangers that e scooters can pose to the rider and illustrate how a safer choice transport should be considered.
E scooters are also well documented to be a serious danger to others using the roads and pathways, especially pedestrians particularly those who are visually or aurally impaired or have some other kind of disability. There have been reports of pedestrians being seriously injured or even killed after being struck by an e scooter.
Here are just some of the tragic headlines that have been published involving death and injury from e scooters.
- E-scooter rider who knocked over pedestrian, 77, jailed for 16 months
- Woman left with broken elbow after being hit by teen riding electric scooter on pavement in Whiston
- Electric scooter rider pleads guilty in hit-and-run death of Gone Girl star Lisa Banes
Electric Motorbikes and Electric Mopeds – The Safer Option
Electric motorbikes and electric mopeds offer the safer alternative to e scooters. Electric motorbikes provide a wide range of features and benefits that make them the perfect choice for commuters, students and anyone wanting easy access to local shops or to visit friends and family.
The benefits of electric motorbikes and electric mopeds include:
- Road legal use throughout the UK
- A very low recharge time of 3-5 hours
- Delivers an impressive top speed of 30 – 63 mph
- Lower speed options up to 30 mph for low-speed zones
- Eco-friendly and sustainable
- Easily maintained at low cost
- Less likely to be stolen than an e scooter
As can be seen, e scooters are illegal and dangerous to both the rider and others in the community.
If you are looking for a safe, practical, economical and stylish electric mode of transport, then look no further than the electric motorbike and electric moped. They will offer everything you need.
Call our team on 0330 165 4133 and we will be happy to help you choose the best model to meet your needs.
* Anyone caught riding an e scooter (unless it is on private land) is liable to a £300 fine, confiscation of the scooter and 6 penalty points (which will be carried forward to a licence if the rider does not have one at the time of the offence). 6 points on a driving licence can mean sky high insurance premiums. You can also get a fine and penalty points for riding through a red light and other traffic violations.