Are Electric Scooters Road Legal In The USA, U.K.?

Electric scooters are an emerging trend, and many people think of them as the future of transportation. The scooters are legal in both U.S. and U.K., and you can own, sell and buy one legally; however, some specific rules and regulations govern its usage.

The traffic laws that regulate the usage of e-scooters vary in both U.K. and U.S., but they also share one common aspect that they don’t fall under one clearly defined legislation tho you will find some bits regarding them.

Are Electric Scooters Road Legal In The USA, U.K.?

The laws governing e-scooters in U.S. and U.K. are both different. So, if you want to know whether riding an e-scooter might get you in trouble, we will give you plenty of detail in the article.

E-Scooters in the UK

E-scooters are becoming familiar with each passing day in the U.K. However, the accidents relating to them, including fatal injuries, are also on the rise. The last case of an accident relates to a three-year-old girl who suffered from life-changing injuries after being involved in a collision in South London.

Checkout: Best Electric Scooter for Heavy Adults and Best Electric Scooter for teenagers

Although E-scooters aren’t illegal in the U.K., including their trading or ownership, you can’t use one in public unless you have rented it from a legally recognized trial scheme. If you are using an e-scooter on some private land that doesn’t involve direct contact with the public, it’s lawful. Still, for public areas, the laws that oversee cars and other automobiles govern e-scooters.

It also means that it’s illegal for the rider to use it on footpaths, pavements, pedestrianized zones, and cycle lanes.  A rider will also have similar laws to cars when it comes to:-

  • License plates
  • Indicators
  • Tax and Insurance
  • Rear Lights

You will also need a U.K. driving license along with a Q entitlement to ride an electric scooter in the U.K. legally. There are also limitations on the speed limit, and the rental scooters are limited to a speed of 15.5 mph in public areas, while the ones for sale to the public can reach the rate of 50 mph

E-Scooter in the U.S.

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards relating to electric scooters aren’t very clear. There is a federal law governing e-scooters

As per H.R. 727 amendment of the Consumer Product Safety Act, “low-speed bicycles,” or “two- or three-wheeled vehicle with fully operable pedals and an electric motor of fewer than 750 watts, whose maximum speed on a paved level surface, when powered solely by such a motor while ridden by an operator who weighs 170 pounds, is less than 20 mph” is lawful. Although there is no similar law for E-scooters, the general perception is that these also fall under the category.

However, different cities are also incorporating their regulations on electric scooters. For instance, Los Angeles areas follow California’s 2019 motorized scooter law, which states that e-scooters can only travel at a max speed of 15 mph on all the public roads, irrespective of the speed limits and that every rider is obliged to wear “a properly fitted and fastened helmet meeting specified standards.” Additionally, riders need to have a lawful U.S. driver’s license and are forbidden from riding the e-scooter on the sidewalks.

Conclusion

E-scooters are a hot trend these days; however, you need to be careful when getting on one. It is not like regular scooters, and it is governed by special rules and regulations that vary across different states. Although E-scooters aren’t illegal, you need to use them with great precautions and by following all the rules to ensure you don’t end up in some unnecessary trouble

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