Marita Moloney
Marita Moloney

11.43 4 May 2021


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The current lack of rules and regulations on how to use electric scooters will pose a challenge for policymakers in Ireland, according to Transport Infrastructure Ireland.

The State body with responsibility for the national road network is calling for e-scooters to be registered and insured for use on public roads.

Around 20 million e-scooters can be found in cities across Europe at the moment, with Berlin and Paris seeing their usage doubling in the past year.

Dr Suzanne Meade, a senior engineer in TII’s road safety section, explained to Newstalk Breakfast what the group hope to see before e-mobility sharing schemes are introduced here.

"E-mobility or e-scooters have really taken transport policymakers by surprise due to their speed of uptick," she said.

"That's being helped by many share schemes and rental schemes across Europe.

"E-mobility or e-scooters are a really important new part of the transport landscape that have the potential to reduce pollution and congestion."

Call for e-scooters to be registered and insured for use on public roads

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Ms Meade said there are some major challenges to the introduction of e-mobility vehicles.

"One is to harness all the positive benefits, like reducing car use and increasing public transport use, but to do those, we need to ensure the environment is safe," she stated.

"There are certain safety challenges ahead of us and part of that is the lack of rules and regulations on how to use them, both for the user and other road users.

"Currently, e-scooters in Ireland used on a public road are illegal, there is a bill, an amendment to the Road Traffic Act, coming and that should amend that."

Transport Infrastructure Ireland looked at this bill and made recommendations to the Department of Transport.

e-scooter A woman on an e-scooter in the park in Munich. Credit: Frank Hoermann/SVEN SIMON/DPA/PA Images

The group examined whether it is appropriate for e-mobility vehicles like scooters to be on footpaths and what type of road will they be used on.

They also analysed what speed the e-scooters should be driven at, with many vehicles capable of reaching 40kph.

TII also assessed what age the user might be, taking into account that some younger people may not be fully aware of the rules of the road.

Main image: File photo of a woman on an electric scooter by sharing provider Tier Mobility. Credit: Hauke-Christian Dittrich/dpa

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E-mobility E-scooters Ireland E Scooters Scooters Transport Transport Infrastructure Ireland

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