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Mastering the Electric Scooter in the UK: A Comprehensive Guide

With the increasing popularity of electric scooters as a convenient and eco-friendly mode of transport in the UK, it's important to understand the rules and regulations around their use. In this article, we'll cover the legalities, how to ride safely, and tips on selecting the perfect scooter for your needs.

The Legal Side of Electric Scooters:

As of July 2020, electric scooters are legal to use on UK roads, albeit with certain restrictions. Only rental e-scooters are allowed on public roads and cycling infrastructure, with private e-scooter use still limited to private land with the landowner's permission. This is part of a 12-month trial looking at the impact and benefits of e-scooters on the UK's roads.

Electric scooters are classified as Personal Light Electric Vehicles (PLEVs) and must meet certain requirements, including a maximum speed of 15.5 mph and a maximum power of 500 watts. Riders must be at least 16 years old and possess a valid provisional or full driving licence.

Riding your Electric Scooter Safely:

  1. Wear safety gear – helmets are not legally required, but it's a good idea to wear one to protect yourself in case of accidents.

  2. Familiarise yourself with the scooter's controls before setting off. Most scooters have a throttle and a brake, but some may have additional features like regenerative braking or a dedicated app.

  3. Stay on designated paths for e-scooters. Do not ride on pavements or pedestrian areas.

  4. Use hand signals to communicate your intentions to other road users.

  5. Be cautious in wet or slippery conditions.

  6. Keep both hands on the handlebars and both feet on the scooter deck at all times.

  7. Stay vigilant and always be aware of your surroundings.

Selecting the Perfect Electric Scooter:

When choosing your electric scooter, consider factors such as range, weight capacity, portability, and features to ensure it meets your requirements.

  1. Range: Consider how far you need to travel on a single charge. If you require a longer range, look for a scooter with a larger battery.

  2. Weight Capacity: Ensure the scooter can support your weight for safe and optimal performance.

  3. Portability: For easy storage and transportation, opt for a foldable scooter. Keep in mind that larger batteries can result in heavier scooters.

  4. Features: Some scooters come with additional features such as smartphone apps, integrated lights, or suspension systems. Consider which features are most important to you.

With the proper understanding of UK laws and a focus on safe riding practices, you'll soon be zipping around town with your electric scooter, saving time and reducing your carbon footprint.

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