Campaigners are calling for an end to the illegal and continued use of e-scooters. New research has shown that e-scooters can cause injuries in children as they throw them 21 feet into the air.  

A pedestrian could sustain moderate injuries from a collision at 15.5 MPH. However, it is possible for someone to fall and get their head hit on the ground.

Guide Dogs requested the testing to bring awareness about illegally-owned escooters.

After conducting an analysis of the effects of collisions with pedestrians, the charity called for the Government’s intervention to stop illegal riding of escooters. 

Research by the charity found that almost three quarters, or 71 percent of Brits, have seen e-scooters driving illegally on pavements over the past six month.

Despite this rise, police action against the misuse of these vehicles remains low – with nine forces reporting they took no enforcement against riders according to a Freedom of Information request.

With the holiday season fast approaching, there are growing concerns that Britain’s streets and pavements will be inundated with illegally-used gadgets. 

The Guide Dogs has called on the Government to take action to tackle the illegal riding of e-scooters after conducting a study of the impact of a collision with pedestrians. [File picture]

The Guide Dogs has called on the Government to take action to tackle the illegal riding of e-scooters after conducting a study of the impact of a collision with pedestrians. [File picture]

Almost three quarters of Brits (71%) have reported seeing e-scooters being driven illegally on pavements in the last six months, according to research conducted by the charity

According to the research by charity, almost three quarters of Brits (71%) reported that they saw e-scooters illegally driven on pavements within the past six months.

The 15.5mph speed measured is the legal cap of government hire schemes, and the top speed of the UK’s most popular privately owned model.

A poll among private owners of e-scooters found that they claimed to have reached speeds exceeding 21 mph. Some scooters can even reach 60 mph.

The UK does not allow private e-scooters to be legally used, however they are common on streets and pavements within urban areas.

Numerous legalized e-scooter rental programmes have been established in cities and towns across Britain as part of government trials.

Guide Dogs warns of irreversible effects on pedestrians if private electric scooters are made legal for our streets. They also call for stricter enforcement against those who illegally use them. 

The charity conducted a OnePoll survey and found that a third reported experiencing a negative experience using e-scooters. 

This figure is 64% when it involves people with impaired sight. The charity has slammed illegal e-scooter usage as a serious safety concern.

The Department for Transport has revealed that 130 pedestrians have reported injuries from escooters during a 12-month period. 28 percent of those injuries were deemed severe. 

E-scooters injured 131 people over 12 months 

New figures show that 131 pedestrians were injured by e-scooters in Britain during the last 12 months.

The Department for Transport described 37 of the injuries as “serious” and said that they were sustained by 27 casualties.

There were 32 vehicle occupants and 36 cyclists who sustained injuries in an e-scooter accident in June.

Thirteen victims were 70 years old or older, and 17 others were 60-69. One hundred and one children below 10 years old were also injured.

These figures show that 3 e-scooter riders were killed and 729 others were hurt in accidents.

Chris Theobald of Guide Dogs stated: “The trial of escooter rental schemes has sparked an explosion in private sales. We expect more escooters being bought as Christmas gifts this month.

We are asking the Government to join forces with the police to combat illegal riding and increase public awareness of the law.

“If the government is serious about legalizing e-scooters for public roads, then they must get to grips with safety.

“All people are at risk. Our testing does not exclude those who have visual impairments.

“Any legislation that legalizes escooters should fully address speed, weight, sound and, critically, keeping escooters from areas where they may cause significant damage,”

As MPs and campaigners referred to the e-scooters as ‘death traps,’ the Met announced that it will not routinely confiscate e scooters being illegally used on public roads.  

This year the force seized 36377 privately owned e-scooters. However, anyone who is stopped for riding an illegal scooter will be given the law and their scooter will not immediately be seized.

Peter Bone, Conservative MP for Wellingborough, said the Met’s new approach to enforcement ‘beggars belief’.

He added: ‘They should be hardening their stance on e-scooters, not softening it. They can be a danger and a menace.

‘If someone is riding them illegally they should be confiscated.’

Since July 2020 at least six deaths have been reported from e-scooters, and nearly 200 others were seriously hurt. 

Simon Foster, Police and Crime Commissar for the West Midlands, sent Grant Shapps a warning about more deaths and severe injuries, and urged him to crack down.

The Mail received his letter. He calls the contraptions “a threat” and claims that they are becoming more of a drain on the police’s resources.

It is not allowed for private-owned electric scooters to use the roads. Riders face a £300 fine and points on any current or future driver’s licence for using them illegally.

They are being sold by retailers in record numbers, with very few questions.

This means that police will have to pull over hundreds of riders in order to clarify the law, and possibly arrest them for operating a motor car without an insurance policy or license.

Foster stated that the West Midlands Police Force has recorded over 400 incidents in the past few years.

Many involved youth thugs riding unsafely such as on the streets or using e scooters to commit crime.

Shakur Amoy pinnock (20 years old) died in June from severe head injuries after his e-scooter collided in Wolverhampton with a Volkswagen Golf.

E-scooters that are part of government-backed trials and users usually pay rent per minute to use the service, are legally licensed and subject to licence checks. This is to insure a level of safety. 

These devices can only be used on roads, cycle lanes or pavements in 50 different cities throughout the country.

The Ministers are still waiting to make a decision about whether or not private-owned e-scooters will be legalized on roads. This delay is expected to continue until the summer of 2022.

Foster suggested that they be sold until such a decision is made, as well as a new regulatory system.

He wrote to Mr Shapps, stating that ‘Clearly, the legislation and regulatory system around private e-scooters for sale and use is not fit for purpose.

“In the future, private-owned escooters must be licensed and regulated.

“Until we get to this point, we ask you to prohibit the private sale of e-scooters in order not further injury or death on our roads.”

Is it legal to use an electric scooter on the street or pavement?

According to the Department of Transport, the e-scooters can be classified as “powered transporters” and are therefore considered motor vehicles. 

To be able to drive on roads, they must meet several requirements. These include having insurance and complying with ‘technical standard’.

The use of e-scooters owned privately is prohibited in Britain. 

The Metropolitan Police has said riders risk being fined or even having penalty points added to their licence. Police could also seize e-scooters from riders. 

In May 2019, the Metropolitan Police ran an operation in London seizing e-scooters which were being illegally used on the city's streets

The Metropolitan Police conducted a London operation to seize e-scooters that were illegally being used in London’s streets. 

The Met has warned e-scooter users from riding their machines on the road

Met warns e-scooter riders not to take their scooters on the roads

The Department of Transport stated that e-scooters were covered under the 1988 Road Traffic Act. It also covers Segways and hoverboards as well as go-peds (combustion engine powered kick scooters), powered unicycles and uwheels. 

The ban does not apply to electrically-assisted pedal bicycles.  

According to the Department of Transport, motor vehicles need to meet several requirements to be legally allowed to drive on public roads. They include insurance, conformity to technical standards, standards of use, payment of vehicle tax and licensing and registration, driver testing, licensing and licencing, as well as the use of safety equipment.

“If a user of a powered transportation vehicle could comply with these requirements it may be legal for them to use the public roads in principle.” It is possible that they may find it difficult to meet all requirements. Therefore, using public roads would constitute a crime. 

The UK Government approved the trial of electric scooters for 12 months through licensed rental companies. It was launched in July 2020. Vehicle speeds are restricted to 15.5mph. There are around 20 sites involved in this trial. The trial area cannot accept private e-scooters.

With permission from the landowner, private e-scooters may be used on private property.