A woman has been banned from the roads after being convicted of drink driving on an e-scooter today.
Kyah Jordan was almost three times over the limit when she went through a red light and almost crashed into an unmarked police car.
In court, her lawyer tried to argue that she was travelling so slowly on the electrically powered contraption she couldn’t have posed a danger to anyone.
But magistrates banned the 20-year-old from the road for two years, stating an e-scooter was, ‘a motor vehicle; the same as a moped, the same as a bus’.
Kyah Jordan (pictured outside Isle of Wight Magistrates’ Court), was almost three times over the limit when she went through a red light and almost crashed into an unmarked police car
Officers saw her run a red light then realised she was heading directly towards them before she ‘narrowly missed a head-on collision’. Pictured, The e-scooter on the night of the incident
What is the law on drink-driving electric scooters in the UK?
E-scooters are classified as Personal Light Electric Vehicles (PLEVs), which means they are subject to all the same legal requirements including MOT, tax and licensing.
Drink-drive laws therefore apply when riding a scooter.
In December, Tyrone Drane, 26, admitted drink driving on an electric scooter in Norwich.
Norwich Magistrates’ Court heard how he was arrested and found to have 144 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood. The legal limit is 50.
Drane pleaded guilty to the charge of driving a vehicle above the legal alcohol limit.
Last October, Sean McPeake, 31, was caught riding an e-scooter while drunk in Ipswich.
He told police he’d had ‘a couple of pints.’
He failed a roadside breath test and was found to have 55 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath.
The legal limit is 35mcg in 100ml of breath.
In January last year, Dmitry Gromov became the first person convicted of drink-driving on an electric scooter.
The 28-year-old, from Shoreditch, east London, rode his e-scooter while drunk and crashed into a moped injuring both the driver and pillion passenger.
He pleaded guilty to drink-driving and careless driving at London Wall in the City of London.
He drove the e-scooter one-and-a-half times over the limit on May 31, 2019 when the crash occurred and was found to have 134 mg of alcohol in 100 ml of blood. The legal limit is 80mg.
Jordan is believed to the first female found guilty of the offence after being spotted by police in December riding late at night on the e-scooter through Newport on the Isle of Wight.
Magistrates on the Island heard that Jordan had been drinking double shots of rum with friends before they decided to pick up the trendy form of transport from outside a nearby supermarket.
A Boris bike-style scheme with e-scooters is in place on the Isle of Wight, with several locations available for people to get them from.
Prosecutor Liz Miller said that at 10.30pm police in an unmarked armed response vehicle first noticed Jordan – who had never ridden an e-scooter before – heading in their direction.
Officers saw her run a red light then realised she was heading directly towards them before she ‘narrowly missed a head-on collision’.
Police said after the incident that if there had been a crash ‘the driver would have been injured without doubt’.
One of the officers shouted at her to stop, but she didn’t respond, so they chased her on foot, eventually catching up with her and getting her to stop.
Ms Miller said the police could tell she had been drinking because she smelled of liquor.
Jordan failed a roadside breath test and was taken to the police station, where she was tested to have 97 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, almost three times the legal limit of 35.
Henry Farley, defending, said Jordan was out with her friends when they ‘spontaneously’ decided to pick up an e-scooter from a drop off point near Morrisons.
She admitted she had been ‘naive’ to use the e-scooter, something she had ‘never done before’.
Mr Farley said Jordan ‘didn’t recall’ a near miss and – as the e-scooter was limited to 12.5mph when the incident happened – he disagreed that she had put herself or anyone else in danger of anything more than ‘grazed knees’.
‘I don’t know if you are endangering the lives and limbs of the populace,’ he added.
However, Chair of Magistrates Peter Redding said ‘the law is very clear on drink driving’ and banned her for two years, observing that an e-scooter counts as a vehicle in the same way as more conventional road vehicles.
She was also handed a community order of 12 months and ordered to carry out 40 hours of unpaid work.
Kyah Jordan was banned from the roads for two years, handed a community order of 12 months and ordered to carry out 40 hours of unpaid work
Jordan was out with her friends when they ‘spontaneously’ decided to pick up an e-scooter from a drop off point near Morrisons (pictured)
At the time of the incident, Isle of Wight Police posted on social media: ‘This evening, the rider of the E-scooter pictured below, found herself under arrest on suspicion of drink driving.
‘The rider was subsequently charged and will appear in court in due course. The use of E-Scooters whilst intoxicated will not be tolerated.’
It is currently illegal to ride e-scooters on a UK public road, cycle lane or pavement.
E-scooters are banned from using pavements under the 1835 Highway Act, but can be used on private land with the landowner’s permission.
In July, the Government made it legal for rental companies to hire out e-scooters in 30 cities and towns. Users must be over 16, have a driving licence and the scooters must be limited to a top speed of 15.5mph.
The Beryl e-scooter scheme was introduced on the Island in December ahead of a 12-month trial. Twenty five of the vehicles were initially available with plans to make a further 125 available.
Residents wishing to use the scooters download an app, input their driving licence details and set off. Users are charged by the minute.
Initially rolled out just for key workers, the scheme started in Newport and has now been introduced to Ryde as well. There are future plans to bring the scooter scheme to Cowes too.