eScooterGuru Scooter Trials UK

eScooter Trials in the UK

Electric Scooters On UK Roads By July 2020?

Electric scooter trials in the UK could make it legal to ride on public roads, UK Government hints.

Article from Regit:

Stephen Turvil: Jun 24, 2020

The scooter trial that lets people rent these small, zero-emission, electric vehicles to ride on public roads could start by June 30th 2020, the UK Government recently hinted. This is far sooner than planned. So, why the rush to change the law? Why the rush to join other countries and make it legal to use electric scooters in public areas – rather than exclusively on private land?

Naturally, the UK is emerging from its coronavirus lockdown and this presents certain challenges. Social distance while travelling, for example. This is tricky on crowded trains, buses, and water taxis but easier on scooters. Making it easier to social distance should reduce the number of people who catch the virus. The new e-scooter trial has therefore been brought forwards.

Electric scooters have further uses. They ease the burden on public transport and encourage people to use cars, vans, and motorcycles less often. There will be less pollution to damage the environment and cause health issues such as breathing problems.

Trial terms

The electric scooter trials in the UK will be available to ‘all local areas’, the Government said. Andy Street, West Midlands Mayor, is particularly keen. ‘The trial will bring flexibility, choice, and greener travel solutions for the region at a time when we are facing a climate emergency and urging people to leave the car at home’, he affirmed.

Furthermore, rumours suggest that e-scooters will be allowed on cycle lanes and most roads. They will not be permitted on pavements, though. Riders will have to be at least 18 and have a driving licence. Also, only scooters rented for the trial from named companies will be legally used in such ways. Privately owned e-scooters will still only be permitted on private land (like now).

There will also be a strict definition of what constitutes an ‘e-scooter’. It will likely have a limited speed of 15 mph, for example, and have to weigh no more than 35 kg. Such things are the tip of the iceberg. There will be a wide range of criteria.

Critics oppose e-scooter trial

E-scooters have their critics as well as fans. The Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport is opposed to the trial for many reasons. On safety grounds, for example. It said: ‘Regardless of law if e-scooters are legalised in the UK some people will use them on footways – either for convenience or safety. The police will be largely unable to stop it’.

You can read more about possible changes to the law in the UK here: UK Scooter Law 2020