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Where Are Electric Scooters Banned? A Comprehensive Guide

As electric scooters continue to gain popularity worldwide for both personal and shared-use transportation, it is essential for riders to understand where their use is prohibited to ensure safety and compliance with local regulations. In this article, we will discuss the primary locations where electric scooters are banned, either partially or entirely, as well as provide some insight into the reasons behind these restrictions.

1. San Francisco, United States
In 2018, after a period of rapid electric scooter deployment in the city, San Francisco introduced a temporary ban on electric scooters on sidewalks. This was followed by a permitting system that allows a limited number of electric scooter operators in the city. Riders are also required to park their scooters in designated areas and not on sidewalks.

1. London, United Kingdom
As of now, electric scooters are not legal for use on public roads, cycle lanes, or pavements in the UK, including London. However, UK cities are participating in pilot schemes that allow riders to rent scooters legally from specific providers. The use of privately owned electric scooters on public land is still illegal.

1. New York City, United States
In 2020, New York State legalized the use of electric scooters, but with some restrictions. In New York City, electric scooters with a top speed of 15 mph are allowed, but their use is still prohibited in Manhattan, on sidewalks, and in bike lanes. Electric scooter-sharing programs are not currently permitted in the city.

1. Spain
Although electric scooters are generally allowed in Spain, some cities have stricter regulations in place. For example, Barcelona has introduced a ban on using electric scooters on sidewalks and pedestrian zones. In Madrid, electric scooters are only allowed in specific bike lanes and at limited speeds.

1. Germany
Electric scooters are allowed in Germany, but they must adhere to specific requirements, such as a maximum speed of 20 km/h (12 mph) and a minimum age of 14. Riders are also not allowed to use their scooters on sidewalks or in pedestrian areas.

In conclusion, the use of electric scooters is regulated differently across the globe, with some locations embracing the innovative mode of transportation and others imposing stricter regulations or outright bans. It is crucial for electric scooter riders to understand and comply with local regulations when using their scooters, both to ensure their safety and to avoid fines or other penalties.

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