Britain’s largest police force won’t routinely take e-scooters illegally ridden on public roads.
The Met will instead confiscate them only from repeat offenders or when ‘necessary to keep the public safe’ – a move that was slammed by MPs and campaigners who branded the vehicles ‘death traps’.
This year the force seized 3637 private 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.
The Metropolitan Police, Britain’s largest police force will not routinely confiscate e-scooters illegally riding on public roads. (file photo)
A Met spokesman said: ‘If an officer sees a rider on an e-scooter they will explain the guidance and, if necessary to keep the public safe or the rider is a repeat offender, will enforce traffic legislation and seize e-scooters that are being used illegally.’
Peter Bone, Conservative MP for Wellingborough, said the new approach to enforcement ‘beggars belief’.
He added: ‘They should be hardening their stance on e-scooters, not softening it.
They are both a threat and a danger.
‘If someone is riding them illegally they should be confiscated.’
Peter Bone, Conservative MP for Wellingborough, said the new approach to enforcement ‘beggars belief’
Sarah Gayton, street access campaign co-ordinator at the National Federation of the Blind, said there was no excuse for riders not to understand the ‘very explicit’ law prohibiting the use of privately-owned e-scooters on public roads.
‘The police should just take them from people who are riding them illegally – then people would stop riding them illegally. The accident rate among young people is horrendous.’
Since July 2020 at least six deaths have been reported from e-scooters, and nearly 200 others were seriously hurt.
Yesterday, Scotland Yard accused sellers of selling vehicles to customers without informing them of these rules.
Commander Kyle Gordon, head of roads policing, said: ‘It is really unhelpful that retailers, fully aware of the risks they are creating, continue to profit from selling machines illegal for use on public roads without sufficient guidance.
‘I am calling on retailers not to exploit their customers in the run-up to Christmas.’