Illegal e-scooter riders facing month-long police crackdown

A police force has launched a month-long operation to tackle e-scooter riders who flout the law – with offenders facing £300 fines.

West Midlands Police said officers will be carrying out dedicated patrols in the area’s towns and cities throughout June to tackle riders who break the law and put others at risk.

The force, which has chosen to act after receiving complaints about the inappropriate use of e-scooters, said those caught breaching the law face having their private scooter seized, having their accounts to hire one suspended, or up to six penalty points.

West Midlands Police are cracking down on illegal e-scooter use in June (West Midlands Police/PA)

The force said in a statement on its website: “We want to make sure the rules around e-scooters are clear.

“E-scooters are legally available to purchase but it’s currently against the law to ride a privately-owned one in any public place in the UK.

“This includes roads, pavements, parks, within town centres or canal towpaths.

“The only place a privately owned e-scooter can be used is on private land, with the landowner’s permission.”

E-scooters being trialled in Birmingham, Coventry and Sandwell are legal, but only in places where people can ride bicycles, such as roads and cycle lanes, not on pavements, the force added.

The month of action is being co-ordinated through the force’s road harm prevention team with the support of neighbourhood teams.

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Since June 1, 10 scooters have been seized across the force area and three warnings have been issued to riders of scooters available as part of official trials.

Sergeant Jon Butler said: “We know there are concerns across our communities around the use of e-scooters.

“If they are used correctly – and in accordance with the rules – they can be a convenient and greener way of travel. The scheme being trialled in some of our region has ensured there is an alternative and more environmentally-friendly way to get around.

“However, e-scooters can be very dangerous if people break the law and use them in places they’re not supposed to go, such as heavily pedestrianised areas.

“We don’t want people to feel fearful while out and about and that is why we’re taking action to target those who ignore the rules.

“You can face losing your e-scooter, penalty points and be fined hundreds of pounds.”