Cuffe welcomes e-scooter rules, and highlights EU road safety role


New Irish e-scooter laws take effect today

Cuffe calls for EU road safety agency

Dublin Green MEP Ciarán Cuffe has welcomed the introduction of new rules on e-scooters and e-bikes, but argues that they must represent the first of several new measures aimed at stemming the worsening road safety crisis in Ireland and across the EU. Speaking on the first day that the rules will take effect, he emphasised how the rules will fill a legislative gap and provide clarity on the traffic rules for all road users. However, in the face of a worrying trend both in Ireland and at EU level as regards road safety, he called for greater EU coordination to help save lives.

Cuffe, who is the lead Green MEP on the European Parliament’s transport committee, said:

‘’Rules governing how e-scooters, e-mopeds and e-bikes can make use of public roads are very welcome and will improve road safety. When new technologies like this appear on the scene, it’s important that we clarify the rules of the road, set safe limits and give certainty to both users and industry.
“However, we must not overemphasise the risk that these vehicles pose. The number of users remains comparatively low, and by far the greatest risks to our worsening road safety record remain speeding, driving under the influence, driver impunity, and as we saw recently, a lack of data on crashes. If we are to be serious about tackling road safety and saving lives, we must look at the bigger picture and take radical action now to eliminate deaths on our roads.
“As an MEP who has worked extensively on road safety these past five years, I know the EU has a role to play. That is why I am calling for an EU Road Safety Agency and EU-wide maximum safe speed limits. The agency would not only collect data on road safety, but set standards for the size and speed of vehicles in the face of huge demand for SUVs, and monitor emissions-cheating to avoid a repeat of the Dieselgate scandal. To those who say lower speed limits and action on SUVs are inconveniencing drivers, I say that we cannot put a price on human life.’’

New rules on the use of e-scooters and e-bikes come into force today, May 20th, filling a legislative gap that will provide clarity on the applicable rules of the road.  Among other measures, the rules set a minimum age of 16 for e-scooter users, set maximum design speeds of 20 km/h, permit the use of e-scooters in bicycle lanes and forbid the carriage of goods or passengers. Additionally, more powerful e-mopeds that can go at speeds of over 25km and up to 45 km will require registration.


May 20, 2024

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