Scoot scoot, hey, beep beep
There’s a revolution happening in Britain. Not the kind where there’s bloodshed or a transfer of power. Not the kind where there’s an inspirational grassroots movement. And, tragically, not the kind where Hugh Jackman sings a duet with Eddie Redmayne. No, this is the kind of revolution that only has to do with e-scooters.
Yes, E-scooters have finally been legalized on the streets of Britain in a move that the government is calling a “transport revolution.”
Why does legalizing something that tons of people are using anyway illegally count as a “revolution”? Look, okay, these guys really just need a win right now.
E-scooters were illegal in the past because they travelled at dangerous break necking speeds such as 12 and 13 miles per hour. (Pretty sure people are literally capable of running faster than that when they hear the phrase “last call,” but okay).
It’s unclear what’s changed between now and then…except now there are a lot of things more dangerous than e-scooting at a speed of 12 mph (for example, touching a handrail on the bus or the Underground).
Before you get too excited and hop on your e-scooter, know that they won’t be allowed on all public roads. They’ve only been approved in four “future transport zones,” including Portsmouth, the West of England, Derby and the West Midlands. For people living in Portsmouth, the West of England, Derby and the West Midlands, this is the most exciting thing to happen since the last transport revolution when trains were invented and they were able to leave Portsmouth, the West of England, Derby and the West Midlands for London.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps bragged about his move to legalize e-scooters, saying he was “ripping up the rulebook” and “cementing the UK’s position as a world-leading innovator.” Because there’s nothing to “cement your position as an innovator” quite like legalizing something that’s been going on for ages all over Europe and the US.
If you’re worried about safety requirements for the e-scooters, then surely the news that the government is “ripping up the rulebook” will put you at ease.
In other transport news, the latest analysis from the Department of Transport shows that there are something like 50 million potholes on UK roads. But don’t worry, because soon there will e-scooters as well as traditional bicycles getting stuck in them. That’s innovation.