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E-Scooters: Are They a Good or Bad Thing? Survey Data19th May 2021 Personal Injury
Electric scooters, or e-scooters, have grown in popularity in recent years for their ease of use, portability and environmentally friendly qualities. However, the law regarding e-scooters can be easily misunderstood and there are concerns over safety. JMW Solicitors launched a survey to find out the public’s knowledge and opinions on e-scooters.
Here, we take you through the key trends identified from the survey of more than 1,000 people and provide all the data from the results.
One quarter of people have used an e-scooter
Results from the survey revealed that 25% of respondents have used an e-scooter, while 61% admitted they were open to riding one. Some 13% of people own an e-scooter - at the moment, privately-owned e-scooters can only be used on private land and are not allowed to be ridden in public.
Of those who own an e-scooter, 70% think that they can be used in public, which suggests that these owners may be breaking the law as only rental e-scooters can be used in public. From 1st August 2020, it became legal for rented e-scooters to be used in public with the Department for Transport publishing guidance that included:
- Banned use of e-scooters on pavements
- A speed limit of 15.5mph
- Recommendations to wear a helmet
Despite this guidance, 68% of e-scooter owners think the contraption can be used on pavements, while 12% admitted to not wearing a helmet.
Significant lack of knowledge around e-scooter law
Our survey highlighted a real lack of knowledge around the rules of using e-scooters, with more than half of respondents (52%) admitting to not knowing the related law. More than a quarter (29%) think that a privately-owned e-scooter can be used in public and 16% think e-scooters can be used on the pavement.
Furthermore, despite 65% of people thinking that e-scooters are safe, the majority (44%) don’t know enough to make a decision regarding e-scooters being made legal - 41% said that e-scooter usage should be made legal.
|Yes, I know the law||19.44%||216|
|I think I know the laws||28.17%||313|
|No, I don't know the rules||52.39%||582|
More than half of people think e-scooter use should be licenced
The survey revealed that 56% of respondents think e-scooter use should require a licence, similar to driving. When asked to explain their answer, most responses were related to safety concerns:
- “I believe all cyclists and scooter users should pass a test, have insurance and be required to wear a helmet to be on the road.”
- “It would regulate their use and mean you can be fined for being unsafe on one.”
- “Due to the speed they can travel and the potential damage that could be caused in a collision.”
- “It’s a motorised form of transport, even if it is electrical, therefore, you should pass a test, get a licence and be insured, that way the rider may use their e-scooter more responsibly.”
Majority of survey respondents want e-scooter to be age restricted
The majority of participants (85%) expressed that e-scooter use should be age restricted, with 82% of respondents suggesting use should only be allowed for over 16s, while a quarter said use should be restricted until a person is over 18 years old.
Respondents also believed that riders should receive the same safety advice as cyclists (93%), with e-scooter users having to wear a helmet (88%) and high-visibility clothing (74%).
The full survey results
How safe do/would people feel riding an e-scooter in the following places?
|Very Unsafe||Unsafe||Neither Safe nor Unsafe||Safe||Very Safe|
|On the road||38.01%||32.20%||15.38%||10.55%||3.85%|
|In a bike lane on the road||13.51%||22.00%||20.93%||35.78%||7.78%|
|In a bike lane separate from the road||8.05%||11.36%||15.21%||45.80%||19.59%|
What reasons have incentivised/would incentivise you to use an e-scooter?
|To save time||40.88%||457|
|To make my journey easier||31.75%||355|
|To be considerate to the environment||34.26%||383|
|To save money||24.78%||277|
|To avoid congestion||29.43%||329|
|To avoid having to find car parking||26.48%||296|
|To avoid having to get public transport||29.07%||325|
|To get to places not served by public transport||27.46%||307|
|As back up to my usual mode of transport||15.21%||170|
|Other (please specify)||6.89%||77|
Can you use a privately-owned e-scooter in public?
|I don't know||38.61%||429|
Can you use an e-scooter on the pavement?
|I don't know||36.99%||411|
Do you think e-scooter usage should be made legal?
|I don't know enough to make a decision||44.10%||490|
Do you think e-scooters are safe?
How safe would you feel as a pedestrian sharing the pavement with e-scooter users?
|Neither Safe or Unsafe||21.90%||237|
What age do you think people should be allowed to ride an e-scooter?
|Under 12 years old||3.42%||37|
|12 years old||4.44%||48|
|13 years old||1.76%||19|
|14 years old||4.81%||52|
|15 years old||3.51%||38|
|16 years old||33.09%||358|
|17 years old||9.15%||99|
|18 years old||14.79%||160|
|Over 18 years old||25.05%||271|