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On Wednesday 27th of March 2019 owner of an electric unicycle was stopped by Garda on Terenure road. He was fully equipped with motorcycle gear: full face helmet, hi-vis motorcycle jacket, motorcycle pants, motorcycle gloves, and motorcycle boots. He also had rear view mirror and GoPro camera attached. Front light and rear light were constantly on during the day time, brake light was in perfect working order. He was absolutely sure that his ride is legal and he isn’t breaking any law, especially considering many months of experience riding his unicycle on Dublin roads passing by Garda cars, Garda motorbikes, without ever having any issues. He also holds full Irish driver licence and is experienced motorcycle rider with over ten years of experience.
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After stopping Garda told him that his ride is illegal and that he is making criminal offence and that he’s braking a law. None of riders explanations to Garda had any effect on his decision, as according to him unicycle was an MPV even though unicycle by definition is not an MPV since it has only one wheel. Another fact that should be considered that is maximum speed of unicycle isn’t higher than a speed of bicycle, and also the fact that in order to start moving on unicycle rider needs to scoot i.e. to push it to a certain speed with one leg until unicycle will start moving using the electric motor (exactly as pushbike does).
After my unicycle was seized, Garda called Gannon City Recovery to “tow” unicycle and an electric scooter which was seized from another guy who happened to use the same road on the way home and was stopped by the same Garda at my presence while waiting for tow truck.
He also spend two hours following morning, in Tallaght Garda station, waiting for a release form and missed over three hours at his work. Garda officer in Tallaght Garda station simply had no idea what to do with his case, since never heard about unicycles, and any of them being seized.
It not hard to consider eRides to be legally unjustified as by Mason Hayes and Curran – law firm statement: “The Garda Síochána (Irish police force) has clarified that, if an electric scooter (unicycle) requires pedalling or an initial manual scoot to take off, and the motor only kicks in once already in motion, it is not considered an MPV.” which is exactly my case, in terms of unicycle design.
Article is copy of statement made by electric unicycle user himself who got his eRide siezed.
If you have story about your Garda experience feel free to contact us via social links or at eScoot@gmx.com