Private e-scooters are still illegal on public roads in the UK (Photo: King's Church International on Unsplash)

Educate e-scooter riders before prosecuting them, says senior police officer 

E-scooter riders finding themselves on the wrong side of the law should be educated before resorting to prosecution, a police chief has said. 

It is currently illegal to ride private-use e-scooters on public roads, but despite the law the use of battery-powered scooters continues to grow. 

While the Government is planning to introduce new legislation to regulate private scooters, Kent Police chief Supt Pete Steenhuis said riders need to be educated because they’re punished, the BBC reports. 

Supt Pete Steenhuis said: “Police officers across the county have engaged with individuals on the street and in schools to provide advice.

“Should an officer come across an e-scooter being used incorrectly, they will first seek to educate the rider and encourage them to adhere to the legislation.”

The UK Government recently unveiled plans for a new zero-emission, low-speed vehicle category, which would pave the way for the legalisation of e-scooters on the roads.

There are currently a number of trial rental schemes being run across the UK, which the Government plans to use to inform its new safety legislation.

But it is not clear when the new legislation would be introduced, as micromobility brands including Pure Electric and Zinc have urged the Government to speed up the process to help combat the fuel crisis in this country. 

Read more: 2022 to be an ‘industry-defining year’, says latest European Shared Mobility Index

Chirag Shah, chief operating officer for British-based scooter brand Zinc, said: “For the equivalent of a couple of tanks of petrol, you could buy and e-scooter.

“Fuel prices show no sign of slowing down and for a fraction of the cost, the public can experience a low-cost alternative for shorter journeys. E-scooters can potentially change the way we travel and help address pollution and congestion problems.

“The Government has already recognised their potential with the introduction of rental trials, and the Queen’s Speech indicated that the Government expected to legalise their use, but it isn’t clear when private e-scooters will be allowed on the roads.”  

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