Peterborough MP calls for action to be taken against illegal e-scooter riders

Peterborough MP Paul Bristow has called for action to be taken against e-scooter riders ‘before a serious accident occurs.’

Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 11:08 am

The scooters have increased in popularity in recent years but are still only legal to ride on private land with the landowner’s permission or as part of a government trial.

Mr Bristow has now written a letter to Superintendent Kate Anderson, from Cambridgeshire police, calling for action to be taken against riders to prevent a serious accident.

In the letter, he said; “I’ve been contacted by a number of residents regarding the legal status of e-scooters.

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“A number of incidents have been brought to my attention where pedestrians have nearly been knocked over and considerably inconvenienced by people riding e-scooters on pavements.

“I would like to know your thoughts on how we might stop a very serious incident.

“It is my understanding that it is only legal to ride e-scooters on private land and not on public pavements or the highway.

“Despite this, their use on the public highway is becoming all too common. The number of people who raised this with me by e-mail, or on the doorstep, has increased considerably. Now is the time for action.

“I would like to know if you have a strategy in place to deal with their use in Peterborough.

“Have you instructed local officers to tackle the inappropriate use of e-scooters? Will you prioritise pedestrian safety and enforce the law?

“I would be ready and willing to meet with you and anyone else in the local constabulary to discuss e-scooters and their proper and legal use.”

Earlier this month, Cambridgeshire police issued a warning to e-scooter riders about the law and safety involving their use.

Sergeant Andy Morris, from the Peterborough City Centre Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “We have seen an increase in people using e-scooters particularly around the city centre, and with businesses re-opening this week and more people expected in the town, it is important owners of the vehicles are aware of the law.

“We believe many people are unaware that the scooters are illegal to use in public, currently they are only legal to ride on private land with the landowner’s permission and penalties for riding them in public can result in penalty points, a fine and the vehicle being seized.”

With government-led trials of rented e-scooters taking place around the country, including in Cambridge, some people are purchasing their own in the mistaken belief they can legally use them on public paths and roads.

This is not the case and otherwise law-abiding citizens are finding themselves inadvertently breaking the law.

Sgt Morris added: “The city is likely to be busy, making the use of e-scooters highly dangerous. Many e-scooters have a maximum speed of 15.5mph and some are able to exceed this, which can be dangerous for the rider and pedestrians if they are involved in a collision.

“Our patrols have increased in the city centre with the shops reopening and we will be engaging with members of the community to make them aware of the law regarding e-scooters. Those who knowingly and persistently break the law will be dealt with appropriately.”