There has been a rapid increase around the globe for pursuing alternative transportation methods that contribute to a cleaner and greener environment.
The UK is doing whatever it can to keep up with these growing trends –but does that mean lifting a 30-year long ban on electric scooters? With the continuously expanding use of electric scooters everywhere, this might become necessary quite soon.
But what does the law tell us about these vehicles? What role does the DVLA play in all this? And does the government intend to replace fuel bikes by allowing electric scooters now? Let’s take a closer look:
The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency
The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) works to maintain an extensive database of driver and vehicle records along with providing the registration and licensing for drivers and vehicles. They collect and enforce Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) as well.
The DVLA is also a highly effective resource when it comes to buying used cars. They provide a facility for finding car history details because they maintain records for every vehicle on the road. You can also get a DVLA mot check which confirms the status of a vehicle’s MOT certificate. The DVLA checks against its massive database to provide very useful, accurate data for any used car.
Does the DVLA License Electric Scooters?
The DVLA does not provide licencing for vehicles that are “unroadworthy.” An electric scooter classifies as a Personal Light Electric Vehicle (PLEV) since it partially uses a battery motor. Currently, riding an electric scooter on the road goes against the Road Traffic Act 1988. According to the Highway Act of 1835, you can’t ride on the pavement either. So, without a proper electric scooter licence, you cannot take the vehicle out for a drive – unless it’s on private property.
What About Motorcycles?
Electric motorcycles are legal in the UK; however, they are not very common, mainly due to their inability to travel long distances in a single charge. Plus, hybrid motorcycles are out of the scenario at the moment. That’s why you’ll mostly see petrol bikes on the road.
With the government’s current plan for cleaner air, we can’t help but wonder if that means less fuel bikes on the road. The plan does after all favour electric vehicles. The government aims to reduce hazardous nitrogen dioxide emissions associated with nearly 40,000 premature deaths a year. However, this agenda focuses on banning the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans in the country by 2040. There isn’t a clear indication of what that means for fuel bikes yet.
Why then, is there such hype regarding electric scooters now? Are they meant to replace fuel bikes?
Lifting the Electric Scooter Ban
Ministers are considering lifting the ban on electric scooters along with hover boards and Seg ways, but not necessarily to replace fuel motorcycles. An in-depth review of electric scooters will be carried out as a part of the “Government’s Future of Mobility: Urban Strategy” plan. The plan aims to mend “urban mobility” problems in the nation.
A lot of the pressure for ending the e-scooter ban also comes from scooter-share companies. That is why the plan will address a wide range of transport issues including car and bike-sharing as well.
Although the government is scrambling to remove fuel vehicles from the road, it is not necessarily linked with ending the electric scooter ban. All in all, letting electric scooters on UK roads doesn’t automatically mean fewer fuel bikes. Yes, lifting the e-scooter ban may mean a lot of people will opt for these more efficient, cost-effective, and clean-green vehicles rather than petrol motorcycles.