Whether driving, cycling, walking, or scootering, how we use our roads is changing. With the popularity of electric scooters on the rise, new research from insurer MORE THAN shows that two in five (40%) Brits agree to feeling more anxious when they see increasing numbers of e-scooters being used on the road, with over half (56%) of Brits agreeing that e-scooters are making roads more dangerous. The survey is a sample of just 2000 people across the UK.
While MORE THAN sees the benefits of e-scooters as a convenient and eco-friendly way to travel shorter distances, it’s crucial that they are used safely and within the law to avoid putting riders and other road users at risk of injury. However, the research found that only 28% agree* that there is enough information available on how to ride an e-scooter safely.
In the UK, over 30 areas – including London, Newcastle, Nottingham, York – are operating e-scooter rental schemes to help people get around. Currently, only e-scooters ridden through these government-backed trials can be used on public roads (except motorways), while the use of private e-scooters on public roads, cycle lanes or pavements could incur a fine, penalty points or confiscation.
Despite this, MORE THAN’s research found that 83% of Brits have seen e-scooters riding along the pavement, with over just one in five (21%) of those saying that they’ve seen this occur ‘very often’. Just over three in ten (31%) also said they’ve witnessed an accident involving an e-scooter colliding with a car or pedestrian.
When asking those who have used e-scooters in the last 12 months, the survey found that 63% of Brits agree to being aware of the safety rules and regulations around riding them. With the government currently considering where the law should stand on electric scooters in the future, MORE THAN’s research highlights the need for a clear regulatory framework around their use.
MORE CLARITY NEEDED
Nick Kitchen, Personal Lines Underwriting Director at MORE THAN, said:
“E-scooters certainly have potential benefits, offering a convenient and eco-friendly way to get around for shorter journeys, while easing congestion on the road. However, it’s crucial that they’re used safely and within the law to avoid putting riders, pedestrians and other road users at risk.
“The government is due to consider the future of e-scooters, based on the results of recent trials, and we believe there is a need for a clear regulatory and legislative framework to ensure they’re used safely. Further clarity is required in areas such as age requirements, power limits, licensing and the mandatory wearing of helmets. There also needs to be greater transparency around how people involved in an accident caused by an e-scooter can access compensation for the damages or injury caused.
“We’re ready to work alongside the ABI and government to understand the options for the legislative framework around e-scooters. Once we know what these rules will look like, the industry can start to consider designing appropriate insurance solutions that will meet the needs of owners and riders in the future.”
David Walker, Head of Leisure and Road Safety at RoSPA, said:
“Scooters are an emerging way to travel, but what is clear is that not everyone understands the rules when purchasing one privately. We strongly recommend that consumers should check carefully the limitations around use, especially as they cannot currently be used on the public highway.”
This National Road Victim Awareness Month, MORE THAN is urging people to share the road safely. With more vehicles on the road, including e-scooters, there is an increased risk to drivers and pedestrians. MORE THAN is urging road users to be more cautious and to THINK to indicate, SPOT the blind corners and SHARE the road with others to help avoid accidents.