The London Road Safety Council’s Members are the Capital’s 33 Local Authorities with each of these bodies having space for an elected member and an officer representative on the Council.
The Council seeks to support road casualty reductions in London. It provides a forum for members to share best practice, provides training for Elected Members and borough officers and creates education, training and publicity campaign materials for use by its members.
Member authorities were asked to consider the call for evidence and to submit views to the Council. Even though most of our member authorities are currently extremely busy coordinating their local Covid-19 response, two authorities found time to respond and submitted their views. Their responses can be found below.
Member representing Merton:
In my opinion there should be relaxation of the total ban on these. In the moves to decarbonise and move away from petrol power I think there is still a need for personal mobility.
There has already been a large increase in human powered scooters at primary schools to help parents get children to school quickly, without a car, but also allowing for rapid onward travel to transport hubs for work.
For many people who aren’t quite so healthy or face inclines, longer journeys etc. then I think a e-scooter is a viable alternative. I had a test go on one at a conference last year and I was impressed. I think it is worth the DfT doing experiments/field trials to see what or how they should be allowed. In my opinion in London they should be allowed on cycle paths/shared paths but not standard pavements as this could be a danger to very young people, elderly, blind etc. I think where users are competent and wearing a helmet and knee/shoulder pads and gloves they should be able to go on the road, especially cycle/bus lanes.
In terms of specification, I think this needs testing by the DfT, but in general I think these should be speed limited to 15mph. I think any faster would feel too quick for something that requires good balance and control to handle. Also, I think if they are to go on the road then they should have fixed front/rear lights and users encouraged to have reflective/body-warn lights as we’d expect for cyclists.
Overall, I think as councils/government move against cars and many new flats and homes having no right to parking, they should be encouraging viable alternatives, such as e-bikes and e-scooters. This is something I will be advocating in Merton, though the current administration doesn’t want to help people modal-shift in such ways, they only want to penalise car ownership instead.
Member representing Hackney:
In regard to "evidence" the problem we have is that due to the newness of the issue and delays in getting statistics we don't really have it. We would ask what evidence there is in support of legalising them though. Happy to comment on our experiences with regard to scooters as below using the questions asked: