New guidance to enhance e-bike and e-scooter safety

Information around how to safely purchase, charge and use e-bikes and e-scooters has been published by the government today (1 February 2024) to improve consumer safety.

Following extensive consultation with industry, guidance on battery safety for both e-scooters and e-bikes will raise awareness for owners on how to safely purchase an e-cycle or e-scooter, ensure it meets manufacturing requirements and is only bought from reputable sellers. The documents also cover safe storage and charging, the warning signs for fire risk and how to address them, and how to dispose of batteries responsibly.

The guidance also reminds people that e-scooters cannot be used legally on roads unless they are part of an official rental trial.

Separate guidance has been issued to help public transport operators assess and manage fire risks associated with the carriage of e-bikes and e-scooters on trains and buses. Similar information has been produced for those managing premises such as schools and workplaces.

Technology and Decarbonisation Minister, Anthony Browne, said:

Safety has always been our top priority, which is why our latest guidance aims to improve the awareness of e-bike and e-scooter users in the trial areas where they’re authorised.

Today’s announcement follows the Home Offices’s advice on fire safety for e-scooters and e-bikes, which was published last year. To further understand the safety of the lithium-ion batteries used in e-cycles and e-scooters, the Office for Product Safety and Standard (OPSS) is currently conducting a safety study and taking enforcement action where unsafe products are found.

The extension of e-scooter trials until May 2026 will also enable us to build on current learning across areas including usage, safety and environmental impacts, and to explore changing travel patterns since the COVID-19 pandemic.

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