What Queensland’s new e-scooter rules will mean for riders

TRANSPORT and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey says the popularity of e-scooters is a sign they’re not going to disappear.

black scooter
Photo by Brett Sayles on Pexels.com

Mr Bailey made the comment when announcing new rules to govern the transport method at the weekend.

The rules are meant to better regulate the use of e-scooters and help ensure the safety of e-scooter riders, cyclists, motorists and pedestrians in public spaces.

Mr Bailey said the stronger laws will include lower speed limits on footpaths, mandated safety measures, a safety education campaign and clearer signage and markings.

The minister said officials know people are not going to stop using e-scooters. The rules are designed to make footpaths and bike-lanes as safe as possible.

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“That’s why I joined industry and user groups, disability advocates, health, police and government experts late last year to understand what needs to be done to make e-scooters and their use safer for people riding them and those they ride near,” Mr Bailey said.

Immediate action will include the rollout of a proactive safety campaign, focussing on the correct way to wear a helmet, how to ride safely, how to overtake pedestrians safely and keep the footpath clear for people with disabilities.

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Speed limits are set to be slashed to 12kmph on footpaths.

“We are seeing far too many injuries in e-scooter users that are the result of speeding and many pedestrians feeling unsafe on footpaths,” Mr Bailey said.

“Our footpaths are there for everyone so e-scooter riders will need to slow down on footpaths to 12 km/h in future.”

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E-scooters will also be allowed on segregated footpaths.

“For e-scooters to use footpaths less, they need more safe routes to use as an alternative.

“We’ll examine further whether on road bike lanes are appropriate with all stakeholders, with extensive consultation with local government associations and councils to come.”

The State Government will also work with Local Government Areas to ensure signs and markings make it clear where e-scooters can and can’t be ridden and where they can and can’t be parked.

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Tougher laws will be explored to allow police to crack down on things like speeding and drink-riding.

Police Minister Mark Ryan said Queensland Police Service would be part of a new Personal Mobility Device Safety Reference Group.

“We know many people do the right thing and our officers do a great job at policing dangerous behaviour already,” Mr Ryan said.

“But with new rules and regulations we will be better equipped to keep the public safe.”

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More information will be made available in the coming months as discussions with industry and other stakeholders progress.

E-scooter reforms

  • Slashing footpath speed limits in half, to 12kmph
  • Proactive safety campaign to inform users of road rules, parking and their responsibilities
  • Partner with industry for a new e-scooter users guide at point of sale (privately owned e-scooters)
  • Mandate warning devices (such as a bell)
  • Establish an e-scooter parking working group to create clear rules for e-scooter parking to keep footpaths clear for pedestrians and people with disabilities 
  • Allowing e-scooters on segregated bikeways
  • Examine further e-scooter use on shared bikeways and on road bike lanes, pending further stakeholder and local government consultation
  • Improved data recording and injury reporting
  • Improved signage and markings 
  • Road rule amendments
  • Creation of high-risk e-scooter offences, including drink and drug driving penalties, through legislative reforms
  • Cracking down on dangerous and irresponsible e-scooter behaviour such as speeding through tougher enforcement and appropriate penalties 

For more information on the current rules related to personal mobility devices in Queensland, click here.

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