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Commuting using electric scooter

  • 08-06-2020 10:57am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 1,890 ✭✭✭ Stephen P


    Was thinking about getting an electric scooter to commute to work. I’m in Tallaght and work in City Centre. The distance is about 10km. Would this distance everyday be something people do? I have this idea in my head that electric scooters are used for local trips only.


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Comments

  • Moderators, Arts Moderators Posts: 10,501 Mod ✭✭✭✭ 5uspect


    I've seen people use them all over the place, from down along the Grand Canal and even Strawberry beds.
    The former is fine, the latter is a bit crazy. Have a think about your route and the road surface.
    Also be aware of the legal situation.

    10km is nothing on a bike if you have storage and shower facilities.


  • Registered Users Posts: 36,084 ✭✭✭✭ ED E


    Its illegal and you can be done for driving without insurance. Why not cycle? eBike if you like.

    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/first-cases-of-riding-e-scooters-without-insurance-brought-to-court-1.4057797


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,289 ✭✭✭✭ Gatling


    ED E wrote: »
    Its illegal and you can be done for driving without insurance.

    It's not illegal certainly not according to that article

    My OH uses hers for work most days ,

    Langley , Virginia



  • Registered Users Posts: 24,314 ✭✭✭✭ Cookie_Monster


    Gatling wrote: »
    It's not illegal certainly not according to that article

    My OH uses hers for work most days ,

    they are, need tax and insurance as by law they are motorised vehicles. but you cannot get tax and insurance for them, hence they are effectively illegal.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,289 ✭✭✭✭ Gatling


    they are, need tax and insurance as by law they are motorised vehicles. but you cannot get tax and insurance for them, hence they are effectively illegal.

    No there is zero legislation in place to say that they are illegal and no court has ruled on them either .

    Making them legal people might not like them but there not illegal

    Langley , Virginia



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  • Registered Users Posts: 564 ✭✭✭ thenightman


    They are definitely illegal. Unless you are continually scooting to power yourself they are classed as MPV's and require insurance, tax, NCT and depending on speed, a drivers licence. Here's a video of a roads policing Garda seizing 2 in Terenure. Your advice that they are not illegal will end up causing someone a lot of grief and money.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G12b3kgDwRA


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,308 ✭✭✭ Padre_Pio


    Stephen P wrote: »
    Was thinking about getting an electric scooter to commute to work. I’m in Tallaght and work in City Centre. The distance is about 10km. Would this distance everyday be something people do? I have this idea in my head that electric scooters are used for local trips only.

    10k is a handy cycle without electric.
    Any particular scooter in mind? There's plenty of options.
    I'd look into an ebike if you're worried about the legalities.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,289 ✭✭✭✭ Gatling


    They are definitely illegal. Unless you are continually scooting to power yourself they are classed as MPV's and require insurance, tax, NCT and depending on speed, a drivers licence. Here's a video of a roads policing Garda seizing 2 in Terenure

    It's there in black and white in the article they don't need tax , insurance or a license .

    By the sounds the only requirement will be a helmet and a speed restriction software.


    No case has actually been decided by a court or by legislation .

    Not opinion ,not make your own interpretation of motor vehicles laws

    Langley , Virginia



  • Registered Users Posts: 564 ✭✭✭ thenightman


    It obviously isn't if roads policing Gardai are actively seizing them as in the video I linked to. I'd go with their interpretation of the RTA over yours and save myself an appearance in court + impound fees and possible loss of scooter to boot!


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,289 ✭✭✭✭ Gatling


    It obviously isn't if roads policing Gardai are actively seizing them

    But there not ,

    They seized 900 cars from learner permit holders for driving unaccompanied in the first few months of the year

    One Garda siezes two scooters in a single year based off his interpretation of a law that doesn't legislate for scooters

    Langley , Virginia



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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,525 ✭✭✭ con747


    From the RSA website "What is the law on eBikes, pedelecs or battery powered
    scooters? Regardless of the type of bike, its speed or whether it requires a push
    start, the rules are as follows:
    • If it can be powered by mechanical or electrical power alone (i.e. it can continue
    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 i.e. 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".


  • Moderators, Education Moderators Posts: 26,350 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Peregrine


    Gatling wrote: »
    It's not illegal certainly not according to that article

    My OH uses hers for work most days ,

    It's a mechanically propelled vehicle and requires a license, tax and insurance to operate. It's not possible to tax or insure them so they are, effectively, illegal.

    What article are you reading? The entire article is about two people being brought to court over riding an e-scooter and the slow progress being made to legislate them. How did you conclude from that article that it's not illegal?
    Gatling wrote: »
    No there is zero legislation in place to say that they are illegal and no court has ruled on them either .


    You don't have to put legislation in place to say something is illegal. They fall into an unintended category within existing legislation that sets out requirements for their use. Requirements that are impossible to fulfill. So their use on Irish roads is illegal.

    A court has ruled on it. The case mentioned in the article above was ruled on in December. The court handed out five penalty points and a €300 fine.
    Gatling wrote: »
    Making them legal people might not like them but there not illegal
    You may not like it. I don't like it. I'll fight for you to be able to use them without being bothered. But the fact remains that they are illegal and they are being seized.
    Gatling wrote: »
    By the sounds the only requirement will be a helmet and a speed restriction software.
    The FF bill is gone. The Dáil was dissolved so all bills went with it. We're still waiting for results on the consultation they did back in October. Shane Ross has said in the last month that it'll be the next minister's job to legislate for them. Even if Shane Ross wanted to bring in legislation now, there's no Seanad and he's not even a TD.
    Gatling wrote: »
    One Garda siezes two scooters in a single year based off his interpretation of a law that doesn't legislate for scooters

    Oh, it's more than one. It happened a few times. Several were seized. More court appearances will follow.


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 43,485 Mod ✭✭✭✭ magicbastarder


    Gatling wrote: »
    No there is zero legislation in place to say that they are illegal and no court has ruled on them either .
    the problem for them is *precisely* that there is no legislation for them. so they're MPVs.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,072 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk


    the problem for them is *precisely* that there is no legislation for them. so they're MPVs.

    The law doesn't really work that way. If it isn't clearly spelled out in legislation, then it is up to a judge to make the decision if illegal or not. Until a judge sets precedence, then no one can really say that with any certainty.

    Until it is either specifically legislated on or a judge makes a decision on it (and potentially challenged in the high court and EU courts), then it remains a grey area.

    To be honest, given the current pandemic and the need to keep people off public transport, I'm surprised the government hasn't rushed in legislation at least temporarily to make them legal, they would be extremely useful tool to have at the moment. It is all pretty dumb IMO.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,229 ✭✭✭ LeinsterDub


    They are definitely illegal. Unless you are continually scooting to power yourself they are classed as MPV's and require insurance, tax, NCT and depending on speed, a drivers licence. Here's a video of a roads policing Garda seizing 2 in Terenure. Your advice that they are not illegal will end up causing someone a lot of grief and money.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G12b3kgDwRA

    Also illegal under this ridiculous interpretation kiddies electric cars :rolleyes:


  • Registered Users Posts: 36,084 ✭✭✭✭ ED E


    BK the law was written TO BE catch all. So I cant say my Car is a Var and not have to tax it/get a license. The eScoot community spouted this grey area nonsense for ages.



    You probably wont be done, BUT, if you are, itll make it horrendously expensive for you to ensure yourself on a car/motorbike. For lots thatd be crippling. Really not worth it when an eBike up to 250W is totally legal.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,072 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk


    ED E wrote: »
    BK the law was written TO BE catch all. So I cant say my Car is a Var and not have to tax it/get a license. The eScoot community spouted this grey area nonsense for ages.
    .

    That simply isn't the way that the law works. Catch all type legislation is viewed very poorly by the courts and tends to be thrown out, which is why legislators put so much effort into narrowly defining what does and does not fall within a particular law.

    Your "var" example is a poor one, because in every way it looks land operates like a car. An e-scooter doesn't look like any car I've ever seen before. An e-scooter looks and has operating characteristics much more similar to a bicycle or e-bike.

    A judge would have a tough time making a decision on such a case and would likely look to emerging legislation and regulations in the UK and other EU countries, most of which specifically don't class them as MPV's, but as Personal Light Electric Vehicles (PLEVs), which regulations very different from MPV's.

    I'd have to say it is definitely very much a grey area and will continue to be so until legislated specifically for (which is should be) or a judge makes a decision.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 6,247 Mod ✭✭✭✭ liamog


    bk wrote: »
    I'd have to say it is definitely very much a grey area and will continue to be so until legislated specifically for (which is should be) or a judge makes a decision.

    It's pretty clear cut that it is a Motor Propelled Vehicle, if anything the fact that enabling legislation was required in other jurisdictions hurts the case. I'm 100% in favour of e Scooters and other personal electric mobility vehicles, but claiming it's a grey area is dangerous, and encouraging their use on Irish streets may well be against boards.ie policy with regard to illegal activity.


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 43,485 Mod ✭✭✭✭ magicbastarder


    bk wrote: »
    If it isn't clearly spelled out in legislation
    it's a motor propelled vehicle.
    if i buy an electric motorbike which had the equivalent power of a 1000cc motorbike, the law says it's an MPV and is subject to those laws; there's no distinction made in law for the scooter simply because it is less powerful.

    or would you claim that a very powerful electric motorbike is *not* an MPV? if so, what's different about the leaf that means it's treated as such?


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 13,996 Mod ✭✭✭✭ monument


    To be clear here: I’m responding to a reported post and acting as moderator here:

    Scooters are currently Mechanically Propelled Vehicles.

    The provisions under road traffic law here (as with many other places in Europe) is catch-all. So anything from a scooter to bicycle with a two stroke engine added or a speed electric bicycle is illegal to use — the law doesn’t work in discounting things, it says what’s allowed or what the requirements are and everything else is not road legal.

    Scooters etc are currently classed as Mechanically Propelled Vehicles by the Department of Transport and viewed that way also by the Gardai and RSA. So, their use requires motor tax, insurance, the user to be licensed, them to be wearing motorcycle helmets etc and, even with all of that, it’s highly unlikely scooters conform to build standards required.

    — moderator


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  • Registered Users Posts: 564 ✭✭✭ thenightman


    Also illegal under this ridiculous interpretation kiddies electric cars :rolleyes:


    If people used them on the public road in the manner scooters are being used, then yes. Nobody is that stupid though, unless you want to try and prove a point.



    RSA is clear: If a vehicle is powered by an electric or mechanical motor without operator continually pedalling/scooting to propel it, it's classed as an MPV for the purposes of the RTA. All your roll eyes cant change that!


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,229 ✭✭✭ LeinsterDub


    If people used them on the public road in the manner scooters are being used, then yes. Nobody is that stupid though, unless you want to try and prove a point.



    RSA is clear: If a vehicle is powered by an electric or mechanical motor without operator continually pedalling/scooting to propel it, it's classed as an MPV for the purposes of the RTA. All your roll eyes cant change that!

    I'm not contesting what the RSA said i'm just pointing the these cars match this exact definition


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 22,676 ✭✭✭✭ beauf


    Also illegal under this ridiculous interpretation kiddies electric cars :rolleyes:

    Let us know how you get on taxing and insuring one for public road use.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,597 ✭✭✭ Xterminator


    Also illegal under this ridiculous interpretation kiddies electric cars :rolleyes:

    Seen anyone commuting to work on one?

    Its not a ridiculous interpretation, its a logical interpretation, and the solution is fairly simple too. We need legislation to be amended to regularize and legislate how the electric scooters are used, and what responsibility the users have for their own and other pavement/road users safety.

    im quite concerned that some of the scooters seem to be getting over 20kmph, but are being used on the pavements in close proximity with pedestrians. I can only imagine impacts at that speed would cause considerable damage.

    So if you want to do something , contact your TD and ask them to raise the issue.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,899 ✭✭✭✭ Cienciano


    My mate commutes on one. He went through a garda checkpoint set up on the canal where they were taking them. He was let go because his required a few leg pushes to get going. They took the ones that started under their own power.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 22,676 ✭✭✭✭ beauf


    Cienciano wrote: »
    My mate commutes on one. He went through a garda checkpoint set up on the canal where they were taking them. He was let go because his required a few leg pushes to get going. They took the ones that started under their own power.

    How they start does not make them legal. It's just a local Garda ignoring them. If they were legal they wouldn't have been able to fine people on them. Nothing Gray about it.

    If they were legal they wouldn't need legislation to make them legal. Garda are turning a blind eye to them mostly.

    You'd be very unlucky to get stopped. But don't be surprised if you are.

    I've mostly seen them with commuter's. But lately I see more teens with them locally. They aren't as careful with speed though.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,229 ✭✭✭ LeinsterDub


    beauf wrote: »
    Let us know how you get on taxing and insuring one for public road use.
    That is exactly my point


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,420 ✭✭✭ Grolschevik


    beauf wrote: »
    How they start does not make them legal.

    There's something in this related to that, as far as I remember. On phone, so too much hassle to find and quote directly, but the article starts on p34. Just educated opinion on the state of the law, not statement of fact.


    https://www.lawsociety.ie/globalassets/documents/gazette/gazette-pdfs/gazette-2019/june-2019-gazette.pdf#page=37


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,229 ✭✭✭ LeinsterDub


    Seen anyone commuting to work on one?

    Its not a ridiculous interpretation, its a logical interpretation, and the solution is fairly simple too. We need legislation to be amended to regularize and legislate how the electric scooters are used, and what responsibility the users have for their own and other pavement/road users safety.

    im quite concerned that some of the scooters seem to be getting over 20kmph, but are being used on the pavements in close proximity with pedestrians. I can only imagine impacts at that speed would cause considerable damage.

    So if you want to do something , contact your TD and ask them to raise the issue.

    I've seen kids commuting to school on them.
    20 KPH is barely anything people can run at that speed


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 22,676 ✭✭✭✭ beauf


    That is exactly my point

    Then it's clearly not legal.


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