E-scooters: Calls in Germany for licenses, speed limits for new users and indicator lights

  • June 27, 2020

ETSC’s German member DVR – the German Road Safety Council, together with ETSC’s newest member DEKRA, specialists in vehicle inspection, have published 11 recommendations for improving e-scooter safety, one year after the vehicles were legalised in Germany. 

The recommendations focus on the vehicles themselves, but also how they are used, particularly in the city e-scooter rental market.  

The organisations are calling for e-scooter users to be required to pass an AM driving test, equivalent to the test required for mopeds and motor scooters.  The minimum age for e-scooters should also be raised from 14 to 15.

On the vehicles themselves, the suggestion is to add both direction indicator lights as well as reflective stickers to improve visibility. 

In the rental market, new users should be subject to a lower speed limit of 10-15 km/h.  The lower limit should also be applied automatically in certain weather conditions, at night and on weekends.  

DVR and DEKRA also suggest shifting from a time-based to a distance-based charging model for rental schemes, to avoid users taking unnecessary risks to arrive at their destination.  

A recent study by ETSC’s Belgian member VIAS has warned of the risk of head trauma, jaw fractures and abdominal injuries from e-scooter collisions.  A recent study of emergency hospital admissions found that none of the admitted riders had been wearing a helmet at the time of the collision which increased the risk of serious injury.  VIAS is calling for a ban on e-scooter riding on the pavement in Belgium, and has made a number of suggestions for safer e-scooter use.