Calls for immediate action on electric scooters as casualty figures first revealed Bedford News

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Immediate action on electric scooters is needed to address the number of people injured and killed while operating the devices, according to a leading road safety charity.

IAM Roadsmart called on the government to ‘take action’ on electric scooter safety after the Department of Transport (DfT) first published data on electric scooter accidents, alongside its annual accident report of the road.

According to DfT figures for 2020, one person was killed and 128 were seriously injured in accidents involving electric scooters on public roads.

A total of 484 victims were recorded and while the majority were drivers themselves, 100 other road users were also injured. Pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists are among others who have been seriously injured in collisions with electric scooter riders.

However, reports suggest there is a growing problem with private scooters being used in public spaces. Earlier this year, London police confiscated more than 500 electric scooters in a single week from users driving them illegally.

IAM Roadsmart has accused the government of repeatedly delaying the results of its pilot projects and warned that without them a full review of their safety and any necessary legislation cannot be carried out.

Its director of policy and research, Neil Greig, said analyzing the trial data and deciding on the legislation had taken far too long.

He commented: “Delaying once again the results of the pilot projects, we have another Christmas looming where people will buy and use totally unregulated form of transport in the UK.

“The pilots were launched in July 2020 and are not expected to end until March 2022, plus the time needed after that for analysis and legislation – it took way too long in our opinion. In the meantime, police should make it clear that anyone caught driving an electric scooter outside of private land or a test area will have their vehicle seized immediately.

“Electric scooters may have a role to play in the future transport mix, but this can only happen once their legal status is fully clear and it cannot happen soon enough.”

Electric scooters are seen as a potentially cheap and efficient mobility solution, especially in busy cities, but questions remain as to what limits, if any, should be placed on them and their users.

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This notice was published: 2021-10-04 10:34:53

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