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UK Law clarification: "They're illegal to ride in public"


Tom
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So we kinda knew this already but I saw this article today and thought it wouldn't be long before the issue of these was addressed 'officially' no surprise at the boring no-fun-allowed response we get here in the UK. Thoughts?

http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/tech/news/a673228/its-illegal-to-ride-hoverboards-in-public-police-crack-down-on-segway-spin-offs.html#~pqTOZHKGM5i3ZC

http://www.cps.gov.uk/legal/p_to_r/road_traffic_offences/#dot

Edited by Tom
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Still not entirely black and white as it still specifically refers to two and three wheeled electric vehicles with no specific reference to single wheels in the section covering Segways. 

I still maintain that they are toys to most reasonable men and therefore not classified as a vehicle.

Luckily all my local police, who often stop to ask questions are only interested in a good way.

Edited by Gimlet
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I know I'm biased as I haven't exactly been shy about my loathing for those stupid things (which as far as I'm concerned aren't good enough to even be called segways, let alone hoverboards).......but I knew those phunkee Ducks would end up causing trouble for the rest of us. 

I remember wanting a Segway so badly but the price as well as the UK legislation were obviously a turn-off.

Interesting what Gimlet just said about how it TECHNICALLY only refers to two or more wheels. 

I just hope the unique and awesome nature of eucs mean the Met police turn the other cheek. I certainly can't imagine an arrest being made without them ending up embarrassing themselves for wasting police resources ?

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Technically, you would need the permission of Hyde Park.

In reality, if you're not being a dick, then since there are no police these days and PCSO's have no power of arrest or confiscation, you're probably ok if you're careful and considerate.  The problem is that it gives all manner of other dicks a perceived excuse to have a go at you.

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Still not entirely black and white as it still specifically refers to two and three wheeled electric vehicles with no specific reference to single wheels in the section covering Segways. 

I still maintain that they are toys to most reasonable men and therefore not classified as a vehicle.

Luckily all my local police, who often stop to ask questions are only interested in a good way.

The website states it pretty black and white. Saying that, we are obviously dealing with the word of the law vs real life enforcement - i.e. do they police care? Hopefully not.

I went past loads of police in Leeds on my EUC this weekend and none had anything bad to say, so I think we're currently on the good side, but it's still not nice to know that if the police get 'the memo' that all these 'self balancing things are dangerous' then we'll be shown the word of the law. Has made me forget investing any amount of money in a good EUC for now, knowing that I'd be relying on transport that could be taken from me at any time and probably destroyed by the police (like they do with mini motors).

 

Not that I particularly plan on following this silly law but......any lawyers out there know if this counts for parks too? (E.g Hyde park)

I'm not a lawyer but this would include parks since they are public propertly (and if they are private you would need permission) but that eing said its the word vs the enforcement, so I think you're much much more likely to be safe in a park than on a public road.

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Well, I was riding around my 'old stomping ground' where I grew up yesterday evening and passed two police cars - the officers were taking a good look at me as I rode my Ninebot One on the pavement, even stopping at a pedestrian crossing, pressing the button, waiting for the green man, and then riding across to the other side of the road.  No problems :)

Of course, they might have been thinking 'just think of the paperwork, we'll not bother', or they might (and I know it may be a long shot??) just have some common sense which told them there was no crime happening and they had more important things to worry about?

It'll take one of us to get arrested at some point and fight it out to specifically determine the legality of it all, somehow I'm hoping that won't be me, but I'm certainly not going to avoid riding it around wherever I am :D in the meantime.

 

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Why do I suddenly have a rising fear though that this is the sort of jobsworth petty bull**** law that because of the press on this WILL be enforced in London. If so that is going to be devastating. Zooming around the parks (Richmond, Greenwich, Hyde) is half (whole?) the point ?

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As already pointed out, our 'toys' are single wheel 'Cycles' and not 'Scooters' or 'Segways' and as such should attract the same limitations (or allowance) as other cycles - such as bicycles, and tricycles, on the roads?  The fact that they are power assisted might well make the area 'grey' but then there are plenty of bikes out there with motors these days. 

I'm pretty sure any 'up and coming' lawyer would love to get their teeth into a case should we find ourselves needing such service?

Bring it on :D:P:D

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Ian from SpeedyFeet has written this on the Ninebot Owners Worldwide Facebook group:

 

"Single wheel so doesn't apply from what I can see. The Toy argument - I can see that being a possible argument...but as long as speeds are not too high...such as the P version."

(for whatever that's worth)

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Yep, definitely focus on the number of wheels - the Oxford Dictionary definition of Scooter states "A light two-wheeled open motor vehicle on which the driver sits over an enclosed engine with their legs together and their feet resting on a floorboard." and "A child’s toy consisting of a footboard mounted on two wheels and a long steering handle, propelled by resting one foot on the footboard and pushing the other against the ground."

If any of us are unfortunate enough to have our 'child's toy' confiscated for any reason best makes some detailed notes as to what they define the article as - on the paperwork too - and if the word 'Scooter' is used anywhere then we should be home free :)

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The fact that they are power assisted might well make the area 'grey' but then there are plenty of bikes out there with motors these days. 

I thought the same too but then read:
 

4."I have seen people using electric bicycles on the road without registration. Why are they permitted but a self-balancing scooter is not?"

Bicycles are covered by different rules to those applying to self balancing scooters. Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycles must meet the requirements of the Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycles Regulations 1983. Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycles that conform to these regulations are considered to be pedal cycles and as such are allowed to use cycle facilities such as cycle lanes on the road and cycle tracks away from the road which other powered vehicles are prohibited from using. A self-balancing scooter does not meet these requirements as it cannot be pedaled.

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Do they not come under the same rules that still enable the sinclair c5 to be completely road legal??

 

I think the main failing point we all have is that the motors are too powerful.

 

https://www.gov.uk/electric-bike-rules

The rules for the max bike motor size are never followed either, the guy running a bike safety course had a 800w motor on his electric bike that was taken on public roads.

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I'm just thinking, if any forum head/moderator is reading this.......might be a good idea to have a new section so people from the UK can report from this day forward any problems/comfrontations with police if they have any. But more importantly, also so people can share/trade things to say that prove to be successful in convincing them etc. (or alternatively things they've tried saying that havent worked).

Just an idea. Ideally though of course I really hope such a section turns out to be in no way needed

*crosses fingers*

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It seems to be the cheap hoverboard scooter things the hooha is about, as said before, if speed I am going to point out the fact is only got one wheel and point out it is not a scooter or a hoverboard. Had the police drive past earlier gave a good long look but nothing more.

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The issue with "hoverboards" is that a couple of dicks rode them, got in the media, and now all the dicks want them.

The plus side of this is that to most of the people who would fall in this category... is the high learning curve of monocycles will usually be enough to deter them from learning it. Since a lot of them want instant gratification. I have heard "f- that, that's too hard.. I'm getting a hoverboard, much easier" when they try to use mine and fail..

Edited by zentype
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I don't get it.

EUCs and even double-wheelers like Segway are the solution to the individual transportation issue.

I remember how is like to live in London. Almost every day smog, high air pollution, very slow transportation, because of bikers (bikers go first and block all lanes, then buses and cars have the same speed).

I hate breathing this shit from all cars etc. and also don't like primitive bikes.

EUCs are more safe, well at least you have to be smart enough to buy one and learn how to ride. It's clean energy, zero emissions transportation. Sure, you can tell if you don't use solar cells to charge, you still contribute to the air pollution. But actually you don't. It's easier to change the electicity source or have pollution in one place (power plant), than to have the pollution sources everywhere (cars, motorcycles).

London is polluted enough by cars and homes heating (well, Brits don't learn from their mistakes, Great Smog didn't teach them anything). Banning new ways of clean transportation is very bad for the world, but it's nothing new. Oil companies have too big influence over the world.

Sorry for my English, I'm drunk.

Just as Uber is good for customers who want rides cheaper than the state licensed Taxi racket, so EUCs are good for riders who want cheaper/cleaner transportation.  EUC riders are probably messing with someone's staked out area of state-protected profits.  This is how the world works.  

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