The Road Traffic (Electric Scooters) Regulations 2024 will legalise the use of e-scooters on public roads from Monday, 20th May, 2024.

What you need to know about the new Regulations.

From Monday, 20th May, 2024 the use of e-scooters in Ireland will be legal subject to detailed Regulations set out in the Road Traffic (Electric Scooters) Regulations 2024.

Here are the main provisions in Summary:-

  • The speed limit prescribed for an e-scooter 20km per hour (or such other speed limit if being driven in an area where the speed limit is less than 20km)
  • It is illegal for a person under 16 years to use an e-scooter in a public place
  • Use of an e-scooter for carriage of goods is prohibited
  • Use of an e-scooter for carriage of more than one person (the operator) is prohibited.
  • An e-scooter shall not be fitted with a seat.
  • An e-scooter shall not tow another vehicle, equipment or implement of any kind
  • An e-scooter must be designed and maintained in a safe and roadworthy manner and shall not endanger the driver, other road users or members of the public.
  • The design of an e-scooter shall not exceed the maximum design speed of 20km per hour.
  • An e-scooter shall be fitted with two independent braking devices, front position lamp (white in colour), rear position lamp (red in colour) and reflectors. It shall not be fitted with any lighting which would cause undue dazzle or discomfort to road users of members of the public.
  • An e-scooter shall be fitted with an audible warning device, bell or horn to give sufficient warning to other road users of their approach.
  • E-Scooters must be driven on the left-hand side of the road. They shall not be driven on footpaths or on motorways. The same rules that apply to bicycles apply to e-scooters.
  • There is no obligation to register, tax or insure an e-scooter.

The Regulations further specify requirements in relation to wheels, footrest and display of a manufacturers plate.

Breach of Regulations

From Monday, 20th May, 2024 it will be a offence to us an e-scooter in a public place which does not comply with the Regulations.

What effect will the new Regulations have on road users

It is expected that legalising use of e-scooters in public places will increase the numbers of e-scooters on Irish Roads. Whilst the economic and environmental efficiencies are without question, the new laws will result in an increased numbers of vulnerable road users. Drivers will be required to exert increased vigilance to take into consideration e-scooter drivers. Also, drivers of e-scooters will have to apply similar vigilance to all road users and, in particular, to vulnerable road users eg.pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists.

Risks of use of e-scooters

In Ireland during 2023, there were 3 fatalities on Irish Roads arising from use of e-scooters. Garda Statistics confirm that in the period from 1st January, 2023 to 28th January, 2024, there were 222 accidents involving e-scooters reported to An Garda Siochana. Of the 222, a total of 54 resulted in serious or fatal injury.

Caroline McLaughlin is a Partner at Callan Tansey Solicitors LLP in the Personal Injury* Department. If you have questions about any of the issues raised in this article, or any other matters relating to Personal Injury, you can contact Caroline directly here.

*In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement