Survey finds two-thirds are unaware of important e-scooter safety rules, and the potential consequences of breaking them

Survey finds two-thirds are unaware of important e-scooter safety rules, and the
potential consequences of breaking them
Thanks to Callum Taylor from for this article.
National Accident Helpline is concerned about how few people are aware of e-scooter safety
measures and is calling on the Government to do more to protect all vulnerable road users.
• 63% are unaware that you must not use an e-scooter on a pavement or footpath.
• 60% are unaware that you should wear a helmet when riding an e-scooter.
• 40% incorrectly believe that anyone aged over 13 is allowed to ride an e-scooter.
• Two-thirds aren’t aware that you must have a full or provisional UK driving licence to ride an
• 20% don’t know that some of the usage rules for rented and privately-owned e-scooters are
• New brainteaser helps educate people on e-scooter safety guidelines.
• Further information can be found here
Two thirds of Brits are unaware that it is illegal to ride any e-scooter on a pavement, and that
breaking this law could lead to a £300 fine, up to six points on their driving licence, and their
e-scooter being impounded. In addition, just 37% know that you must not use a mobile phone
while riding an e-scooter, and shockingly only 45% are aware that you must not ride an e-scooter
while drunk or otherwise intoxicated. The figures come from a new survey conducted by personal
injury specialists National Accident Helpline, which follows a recent report revealing how two men
in Liverpool have been banned from driving and given a fine after riding e-scooters erratically,
while also over the alcohol limit. 60% also don’t know that riders are advised to wear a helmet
despite these reaching high speeds of up to 22mph while 40% incorrectly believe that anyone
over the age of 13 is permitted to ride an e-scooter in the UK. At a minimum, riders must have a
provisional UK driving licence and therefore need to be aged at least 15 years and 9 months old.
A sharp rise in the use of e-scooters has prompted some police forces to issue warnings on ‘the
danger these machines pose to both the rider and pedestrians’, and experts at National Accident
Helpline are calling on the Government to introduce more robust enforcement and safety
measures to protect all vulnerable road users.
Currently there are around 50 active e-scooter rental trials taking place across England as part of
a government initiative that was first introduced in July 2020 by the Department for Transport to
support a green restart of local travel and help mitigate reduced public transport capacity. The trial
has recently been extended into 2022. A report on the trials, and a decision on their ongoing legal
status is not expected for another year (April 2022).
It is also possible to buy an e-scooter in the UK, and sales have also shot up, with cycling retailer
Halfords reporting a 184 percent sales growth in the first half of 2020. Several industry bodies,
such as the RAC, have expressed particular concern about privately-owned e-scooters, stating that
‘more out-of-control privately owned devices will continue to pose a safety hazard for road users’,
in a recent online article.
20% of those surveyed are unaware that the usage rules for privately-owned scooters are different
to those hired as part of trials, suggesting further education is required upon purchase.
Jonathan White, Legal and Compliance Director of National Accident Helpline, said: “E-scooters are
an attractive option in helping the nation to embrace more environmentally friendly transport options.
However, introducing these schemes without putting adequate safety and enforcement measures in
place puts the public at risk. With e-scooter trials being extended and private sales growing, we would
ask that the Government ensures all riders are made aware of the rules and that there is a legal
requirement in place to wear appropriate safety protection, such as cycle helmets, when operating
e-scooters. We believe the speed limit should also be reduced to 12.5mph, as is the case in Germany.
Other important new safety initiatives in the trial areas could include specific e-scooter routes or roads,
usage curfews, and even artificial noise devices that issues audible alerts to pedestrians. There are
already several published papers on the risk to personal injury and the data is seriously concerning.
This is a matter that simply must not be ignored.”
E-Scooter Safety Risks Brainteaser
To highlight the potential injury and legal dangers that riders need to be aware of when using
e-scooters, National Accident Helpline has designed a brainteaser to show a typical city centre and
an e-scooter rider. Can you spot the eight areas of concern in under 45 seconds?