Police have warned electric scooter riders after a man was stopped and faces a three-year driving ban for a drug driving offence.
Devon and Cornwall Police Twitter account, No Excuse, which deals with road safety, explained that there has been an increase in the number of reports of e-scooters being used illegally on the roads.
The police reminded people their e-scooters are not entitled by law to be ridden on the roads or pavements and riders would face the same penalties as all other motor users.
MPC David Rose of the No Excuse Team said: “Section 143 of the Road Traffic Act states ‘a person must not use a motor vehicle on a road unless there is in force a policy of insurance’.
“Without insurance, the scooter is liable to be seized under Section 165A of the Road Traffic Act, and the rider potentially getting six points on their licence and a £300 fine.
“Other legislation applies regarding driving licences, drink and drug driving, and mobile phone use.”
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Trials of e-scooters are currently underway in a number of cities across the UK and riders there must only use vehicles provided under the terms of the scheme.
However, no part of Devon or Cornwall currently operates a trial e-scooter scheme, so anyone riding one on public land in the force area is likely to be committing a traffic offence.
It comes after officers from parts of Devon and Cornwall have been posting warnings on social media in recent days, alerting unsuspecting buyers that their e-scooters are not entitled by law to be ridden on the roads or pavements.
In a post on their Twitter account, the Devon and Cornwall Police no excuse team said: “E-scooter riders beware: It’s a motor vehicle, so if you have no insurance, you’re disqualified, and you’ve taken drugs, then you’ll be treated like any other driver.
“Now facing three-year ban for his second drug driving offence.”
E-scooter riders could face a £300 fine and up to six points on their driving licence if driving on public land.
Brixham Police’s neighbourhood team recently urged people to think carefully if they were considering to buy one of the electric-powered scooters, stating that “if you drive it on public land you are risking being reported for several penalty point offences and having the scooter seized”.
Why are e-scooters illegal?
The Department for Transport classes electric scooters as ‘Personal Light Electric Vehicle’ because they’re powered by a motor and says they can only be used on private property, according to Halfords.
So, because they don’t always have visible rear red lights, number plates or signalling ability, they can’t be used legally on the roads.
Pedal-assisted electric bikes are ok, as long as they’re capped at 15.5mph.
The DVLA requires that electric vehicles are to be registered and taxed and that you can’t ride scooters on the pavement because of the 1835 Highways Act that prohibits anyone from riding a ‘carriage’ on the pavement.
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