Legalization of eScooters in Ireland

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Recently articles about legalization of electric scooters started popping out everywhere so we will discuss that here and share some info and facts we found.

“The council has carried out research into the use of electric scooters and a study has revealed the majority of electric scooters available to purchase in the Dublin area exceed 250W power output and have a maximum speed in excess of 25km/h,” said a spokeswoman for DCC.

Most popular electric scooter in Ireland and Dublin is Xiaomi mijia m365 with 250W motor and maximum speed of 25km/h so spokesman is here wrong and uninformed.  

So should electric scooters and other personal electric vehicles be illegal in Ireland?

Well majority shouldn’t be illegal as log as they aren’t too powerful and too dangerous. We sure need to take care about safety but 250W scooter sure isn’t dangerous and who ever claims it is probably never drove electric scooter.

“A cycle track or lane is a reserved part of a roadway for bicycles and wheelchairs. No vehicle [other than a motorised wheelchair] may drive into or over a cycle track [that is controlled by a continuous white line] unless the driver is entering or leaving a place or a side road.”

It is also illegal to ride a scooter on cycle paths, according to the Road Safety Authority.

So where should you ride your electric scooter? 

Well cycle lanes are over 100 years old and then nobody knew what is electric scooter and of course that in cycle lanes definition aren’t electric scooters and other types of electric personal transport vehicles.

Cycling in the Netherlands began in 1870 and by the 1920s was the most popular mode of transportation (at about 75%). The first bicycle path was a 1.4 km stretch built in 1899 with two paved bicycle paths alongside the Breda-Tilburg cobblestone road.

By our opinion electric scooter should be legal to be driven where ever kick scooters are until law doesn’t specify where electric scooters should be driven.

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Best place for electric scooters should be cycle lanes since majority of them are making approximate same speed as bicycles.

Should electric scooters be insured and taxed?

Well personally I don’t have problem paying road tax and insurance but if owners of electric scooters need to pay road tax and they are using cycle lanes then why cyclist don’t need to pay road tax? That doesn’t seem to be fair right? About insurance I’m totally happy to pay insurance so I can just lock my scooter and if it gets stolen I just knock on my insurance companies door but I doubt insurance companies would be happy about it. Anything more than €100 a year would be way too much for insurance but in case of rise of stolen scooters insurance companies would lose much more money then make. I would sure leave insurance decision to every owner. If they want to insure scooter then they should be able to do it but if they don’t want to they aren’t obliged to do it.

Final conclusion

Id say all this is about profit. Electric scooters don’t pay road tax, insurance, parking, they can’t be clamped so they are on peek. Other thing council doesn’t see is that every electric scooter removes one car from road. Try to imagine all that cars turned into eScooters? Would you ever be late for work? Would you ever be stuck in traffic jam? Can electric scooter with 25km/h make big accident with one or two lanes closed? If there is accident do you need firefighters to release driver from scooter?

Its quite sad that it seems other media are holding City Councils side and doesn't even trying to ask eRide community for their opinion or their side of story.

Remember electric scooters and other personal electric vehicles are good for environment, eco friendly and much more safer than almost any other transport. They should be solution for solving transport problems and traffic jams in city instead of being discussion for banning them.

Latest update: Most popular electric scooters like Xiaomi Mijia M365 are legal in Ireland.

What is the legal status of electric/battery powered scooters?

The use of these types of scooters has become very popular in recent years, especially with children. The legal position is that if one of these scooters can be powered by mechanical or electrical power alone, and does not require pedalling or scooting for propulsion, then the scooter is considered to be a mechanically propelled vehicle (MPV) in terms of road traffic legislation, irrespective of engine capacity. If such scooters are to be used in any public place, they require insurance and road tax as with any other MPV. The driver would also require a driving licence and is obliged to wear a crash helmet. If the user of such a scooter cannot fulfil these legal requirements, then the scooter should only be used on private property.

RSA FAQ: FAQs on E-Bikes, Pedelecs or Battery Scooters

What is the law on e-bikes / pedelecs / battery powered scooters? Regardless of the type of bike, the rule is as follows: If it can be powered by mechanical or electrical power alone (i.e. it can go without you pedalling or scooting it) then it is considered to be a mechanically propelled vehicle (MPV). Under Road Traffic Law, if an MPV is used in a public place it is subject to all of the regulatory controls that apply to other vehicles. Therefore, it must be roadworthy, registered, taxed and insured. The driver of the vehicle must hold the appropriate driving licence and is obliged to wear a crash helmet.

Do I need a licence to operate an e-bike/battery scooter? This depends on whether the vehicle is classified as an MPV (see info above). If it is an MPV, please contact our Licensing Section on 1890 41 61 41 or (096)25000 to clarify which licence category is required for the vehicle concerned.

There is no COC available for my e-bike/scooter. What can I do to register it? If the manufacturer cannot supply a COC, this means your e-bike/scooter can only be used on private property or purpose built tracks.

I don’t know if my e-bike is classed as an MPV or not? Please refer to the MPV criteria above, including the legal definition. If you are still unsure please seek legal advice. The RSA does not assess vehicles on a case by case basis to ascertain whether they are MPVs or not. It is the legal obligation of the vehicle owner to ensure that the vehicle which he/ she owns, complies with all of the regulations applicable to the category of vehicle concerned.
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