E-Scooters - A Benefit or A Burden?

E-scooters provide a quick and convenient way to get around, but they are also contributing to an increase in the number of injuries in Queensland. In fact, since 1 January 2019 there have been more than 3,300 cases presenting to emergency departments as a result of e-scooter incidents. Of these cases, more than 50% of patients suffered from head and facial injuries; an indication that the riders were not wearing helmets at the time of the incidents.

Despite it being illegal for children under the age of 12 to ride an e-scooter, and for children between the ages of 12 and 16 to ride an e-scooter unsupervised in Queensland, more than 10% of the injuries treated by emergency departments during this period concerned children under the age of 15.

While it is legal for adults to ride e-scooters, many rules apply to their use. For example, it is illegal for e-scooter riders to operate their vehicles at a speed of more than 12km/hour on footpaths or shared paths, and hefty fines of up to $619 exist for speeding. Other fines include:

  • $154 for e-scooter riders not wearing a helmet;
  • $1,161 for using a mobile phone whilst operating an e-scooter;
  • $154 for ‘double riding’ (i.e. when more than one person rides on the same e-scooter at a time); and
  • $185 for riding an e-scooter on a prohibited road.

How can I safely use an e-scooter in Queensland?

By following the below rules related to e-scooters in Queensland you can enjoy the fun and convenience of an e-scooter, while also protecting yourself and your fellow community members and avoiding a hefty fine at the same time.

  • When riding on footpaths and shared paths, you must reduce your speed to a maximum of 12 km/h;
  • Ride at a maximum of 25 km/h on bike paths and roads;
  • Be aware of where e-scooters are prohibited, including roads where there is a speed limit of more than 50 km/h;
  • Do not allow other passengers to ride on your e-scooter at the same time as you;
  • Do not use your phone whilst operating an e-scooter;
  • Always wear a helmet;
  • Do not operate an e-scooter during or after you have been drinking alcohol;
  • You must indicate your presence to pedestrians by using a bell, and at night you should use a light and/or reflectors to provide warning of your approach; and
  • Observe all regular road rules in addition to the above.

Are e-scooter riders held responsible for accidents they cause?

E-scooter riders who cause an accident and/or an injury are, by law, required to remain at the scene of the accident, assist with attending to any injuries sustained in the accident and exchange details with the other party or parties to the accident.

As e-scooters are considered personal mobility devices, it is not currently compulsory for e-scooter riders to be registered or obtain CTP insurance in the same way motor vehicles are. Therefore, a party who is injured as the result of an accident with an e-scooter would need to make a civil claim against the e-scooter rider and prove that they were negligent for the e-scooter rider to be liable for the accident and compensate them.

What should I do if I am in an accident involving an e-scooter?

If you have been injured due to an accident which was the fault of an e-scooter rider you should seek the advice of a personal injury lawyer who can discuss your options with you and provide you with information on how you can make a claim for compensation against the e-scooter rider you believe is at fault.

Scroll to Top