Road Safety Partnership's warning over e-scooters
A road safety watchdog has issued a reminder that it is illegal to ride an e-scooter on a public road or pavement.
As spring continues and the summer offers the promises of long days of outdoor pursuits, the Lancashire Road Safety Partnership has prepared a leaflet detailing the current situation regarding the electronic vehicles.
The Safety Partnership says: "We understand that buying an e-scooter can be tempting, especially as you can get them from many popular retailers.
"You can buy one but you can’t ride it on a UK public road, cycle lane or pavement. The only place an e-scooter can be used is on private land.
"E-scooters are classified as Personal Light Electric Vehicles (PLEVs), so they are treated as motor vehicles and subject to the same legal requirements, such as: MOT, licensing, tax and insurance.
"As e-scooters do not have number plates, signalling ability and don’t always have visible rear lights, they can’t be used legally on the roads.
"Lancashire Road Safety Partnership and Lancashire Police understand the public’s support for environmentally friendly modes of transport.
"We want to work with the public to make sure the roads are safe for everyone.
"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 the roads.
"All local authorities can apply to take part, but at the moment, Lancashire is not part of the trials."
E-scooters, which are powered by electricity stored on board in a rechargeable battery, driving one or more electric motors. increased in popularity last year, after the Government permitted the start of trials for rental schemes last summer in certain other parts of the UK.
The Lancashire Road Safety Partnership message reminds would-be riders: "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.
"Lancashire Police also have the powers to seize vehicles - please make sure you keep your e-scooter on private land so this doesn’t happen to you."
Lancashire Police issued a reminder about the rules when the e-scooters looked likely to be a popular gift last Christmas.
A spokesman said at the time: “We know that e-scooters are very tempting for children’s presents, but we would urge people to fully understand the law first.
“If Lancashire officers find anyone using e-scooters in a public place, the scooter can be seized, and the rider can reported for any offences.
“We would also urge anyone using an e-scooter legally on private land to consider their safety when doing so.
"Riders should always wear a helmet and could benefit from additional protective clothing such as knee and elbow pads to minimise injury.”