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26th April 2019 | Press Releases, Transport

The Green Party has called on the Government to encourage rather than ban electric scooters

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The Transport Spokesperson and European Election candidate in Dublin Councillor Ciarán Cuffe has said that confiscating scooters is the wrong response to a new way of travelling that is less harmful to the planet than cars. An Garda Siochána have seized scooters recently in Dublin. Earlier this month the Transportation Committee of Dublin City Council agreed a motion in Mr Cuffe’s name as follows:

“That this committee notes the recent rise in usage of electric scooters and other emobility options in Dublin City, and while welcoming the rise in low-carbon mobility; is concerned at the risks to riders and pedestrians; notes the difficulty in registering such mechanically propelled vehicles; and requests the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport to examine best practice in other jurisdictions and as a matter of urgency put in place regulations concerning their use.”  

Mr Cuffe said:

“The Government should be bending over backwards to encourage and facilitate new ways of getting around that are good for the planet. Instead of encouraging this, the Guards are confiscating electric scooters and the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport has kicked the issue to touch by commissioning reports from the Road Safety Authority. His Department seems reluctant to provide regulations.

“Some joined-up thinking is needed as Ireland’s Climate Mitigation Plan says that we should ‘accelerate the transition towards ultra-low- and zero-emission vehicles‘. If we’re serious about moving towards lower emissions from transport we should be encouraging and regulating electronic scooters, and not banning them.

“The explosion in electric scooters shows that young people are choosing alternatives to cars for commuting, and this needs support from Government. We do need to ensure that these vehicles are kept off footpaths, and we may need to insist on a maximum speed, and the use of helmets and insurance, but why confiscate them? There are safety concerns around the use of scooters, but banning them by stealth is wrong.

“Minister Ross needs to encourage low carbon transport rather than kick the can down the road. He should sit down with the Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan TD and provide sensible regulations for these vehicles.

“Banning high-emission vehicles from our towns and city centres would be a much more sensible approach than confiscating clean electronic scooters.”