Whilst it is legal to buy an electric scooter in the UK, there are limitations on where they can be used. Personal e-scooters can be used on private land, but a government initiative means that there are more rental opportunities in larger cities. How can you make yourself safer when using an e-scooter?

Protective equipment –

It is currently not a legal requirement in the UK to wear a helmet or any kind of protective clothing whilst riding an e-scooter. A study by Imperial College London found that wearing a helmet can significantly reduce the risk of brain or serious injury.

Following the rules of the road –

E-scooters are classed as motor vehicles, so they are bound by the same rules as every other road user. Extra care should be taken due to being a vulnerable road user to other vehicles, especially vans and lorries where you may not be as visible to the other driver. E-scooters are subject to the legal requirements of The Road Traffic Act 1988, just like a car.

No passengers –

E-scooters are only designed for one person and carrying a passenger leads to a greater risk of accident or injury due to uneven balance and the slim frame. You should only ride an e-scooter solo.

Take extra care in bad weather –

E-scooters are not designed for bad weather, especially rain. When raining, e-scooters have more risk of skidding which could lead to further accidents or injuries. They also require a greater stopping distance so extra care needs to be taken in bad weather.

Uneven roads and potholes –

Even in the biggest of vehicles, potholes and poor road maintenance make it difficult to drive. On an e-scooter, the small wheel and thin frame mean that hitting potholes or riding along uneven roads can jolt the e-scooter and make it harder to control, which could cause you to fall. Potholes can be even more dangerous when travelling at speed, so always ensure to travel at the correct speed for the condition of the road. Some e-scooters can travel in excess of 20mph. If you did hit a pothole, this may give rise to a claim against the council.