Where you can ride electric scooters in UK as they’re legalised in Queen’s speech

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The 2022 Queen’s speech has confirmed plans to legalise electric scooters on public roads in the UK. Here’s what you need to know.

E-scooters are widely used in the country but private ones are currently only allowed on private land and banned on public roads.

Here’s everything you need to know about the government’s plan.

photo by Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images

Queen’s speech: Electric scooters to be made legal

On Tuesday, May 10th, the UK government confirmed plans to make e-scooters legal on public roads in the upcoming year.

The plan outlined the wider use of e-scooters across the UK and address safety measures, including maximum speeds and lighting requirements.

A government spokesperson said: “While riding a privately owned e-scooter on public land is currently illegal, we are considering how best to design future regulations and our Transport Bill will help us to take the steps we need to make e-scooters safer and support innovation.

“Safety will always be our top priority and our trials are helping us to better understand the benefits of properly regulated, safety-tested e-scooters and their impact on public space.”

Photo by Richard Baker / In Pictures via Getty Images

Where can you ride e-scooters now?

At the time of publication, private electric scooters are only allowed on private land. They are not allowed on public roads, cycle lanes and pavements.

But as addressed in the 2022 Queen’s speech, private e-scooters are to be legalised for use on public roads across the UK as part of a new legislation.

Currently, only rental electric scooters are allowed on public roads. A number of different rental companies operate in more than 30 areas, including Bristol, Bournemouth, Birmingham, London and Newcastle.

Rental e-scooters have a maximum speed limit of 15.5mph (24.9km/h). Many of them cost £1 to unlock and 14p-20p per minute to use.

photo by Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images

More about the legislation and other key plans

AA’s president (The Automobile Association) Edmund King voiced his support for the legal use of private e-scooters which could have positive impact on the environment.

“With e-scooters and other forms of micro-mobility popping up more frequently on UK roads, it makes sense that safety regulation should come first,” King said.

“If introduced alongside appropriate infrastructure, e-mobility could help provide a positive shift in greener localised travel both for individuals and last-mile freight.”

Other plans outlined in the speech included a new body to regulate railways and legislation to ban ferries that do not pay their staff minimum wage from docking at UK ports.

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