One in four say all e-scooters should have to pay tax and insurance

regardless of speed capability

Some 36% voice safety concerns of e-scooters travelling on pavements

One in seven feel e-scooters should be banned altogether

With new legislation on electric scooters expected to be signed into law in the coming weeks, there is widespread disquiet amongst the public about this mode of transport travelling on pavements with 36% of those surveyed saying that they pose a danger to pedestrians, and about one in seven (14%) stating that e-scooters should be banned altogether.  This is according to the findings of a new survey of 1,000 consumers by iReach Insights on behalf of Aviva Insurance Ireland DAC (Aviva) which examined attitudes towards e-scooters as a mode of transport.

While it is important that we continue to advocate for more sustainable travel choices amongst consumers, particularly in urban areas, it would appear from this survey that there is a real lack of consensus amongst consumers on e-scooters. While the use of e-scooters has increased substantially in recent years, so too sadly has the number of traffic incidents and collisions involving e-scooters. Two people have died and more have suffered serious injuries from collisions involving e-scooters since the start of 2020, and an elderly woman died in hospital last week having been seriously injured following a collision with an e-scooter in Dublin while out walking. More than a third (36%) of respondents are opposed to the use of e-scooters on pavements as they consider them a danger to pedestrians, while almost one in five (19%) believe that for safety reasons, e-scooters should not be used on Irish roads.

Billy Shannon, Aviva

Already widely used across the country, e-scooters are classified as mechanically propelled vehicles, thereby requiring tax, insurance, and a licence to be driven on public roads. However, it is currently not possible to license or tax e-scooters, and this has created legal uncertainties around these vehicles, an issue that the new legislation aims to rectify. The legislation in the pipeline is aimed at e-scooters travelling at more than 25km per hour, with slower e-scooters expected to be exempt from the laws.

Our research shows that while almost a quarter (24%) agree with the planned legislation and believe they should be taxed and insured regardless of speed, over a quarter (27%) are not convinced that it will work in practice.

Billy Shannon, Aviva

Other key findings from the Aviva survey include:

  • Almost one in four (24%) believe that all e-scooters should be taxed and insured, regardless of speed.
  • Over one in five (22%) don’t think e-scooters should be allowed at speeds greater than 25km an hour.
  • Men are more likely than women to feel that e-scooters should be banned altogether.
  • Dubliners are more inclined than others to want a complete ban on e-scooters, with people living in the capital twice as likely as those living in Munster to favour a prohibition of this mode of transport.
  • Those living in Munster are most sceptical about the effectiveness of the upcoming e-scooter legislation.

While the upcoming legislation on e-scooters should help address some of the legal conundrums around them, their increased use has also raised questions around road and pedestrian safety which need to be addressed. It remains to be seen whether the upcoming rules are workable in practice or if the new law should be tweaked so that no e-scooters are exempt from licensing, tax, and insurance. Otherwise, the public disquiet around their use is likely to only increase,” concluded Billy Shannon.

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