WestEndExtra

The independent London newspaper

With e-scooters safety must be the priority

11 September, 2020

‘E-scooter riders must be accountable, obey road rules, and comply with drug and alcohol laws’

• I READ with interest and concern the half-page e-scooter advertising feature (September 3).

I am sure there will be a proliferation of PLEVS (personal light electric vehicles) in Camden in the near future.

They are currently illegal on most UK public roads, based on the 1988 Road Traffic Act and the even older 1835 Highways Act.

It is clear that environmentally-friendly modes of transport are desirable but innovation at the expense of safety is unacceptable.

It was distressing in July 2019 to learn that Emily Hartridge, 35, had become the first UK fatality.

In France there have been several deaths. And in Barcelona a 92-year-old woman was killed when a scooter collided with her.

It is welcome that the Department for Transport trials have commenced in other parts of the country. With legalisation will come regulation and with regulation should come improved safety.

Riders must be accountable, obey road rules, and comply with drug and alcohol laws.

The need for riders to have some form of licence, compulsory basic training (similar to mopeds and motorcycles), and insurance, should also be a consideration.

It is not sufficient, as the advertising feature suggests, that online training will confer safety.

It is likely that many of the e-scooter renters in our area will be tourists with no knowledge of local road layouts and UK traffic regulations.

DR GARRY MANCINI,
NW1

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