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Segways banned from UK roads and pavements

David Ludlow
19 Jan 2011
Arrested Development Gob on a Segway
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Man fined £75 for riding

Segways have officially been banned from UK pavements and roads, due to a recent law case that found the electric vehicles illegal.

Phil Coates was fined £75 after being found guilty of riding the gyroscopically-stabilised two-wheeled scooter on a pavement in Barnsley. The issue with the product is that it's classified as a motor vehicle by British law, but fails to meet the requirements to be driven on the road. As such, it's not allowed to be driven on the pavement or on the road.

Mr Coates' case centred on whether or not a Segway could really be called a motor vehicle or not, where the legal definition is, "a mechanically propelled vehicle intended or adapted for use on roads, as contained in Section 185(1) of the Road Traffic Act 1988 and Section 136(1) of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1988".

Summing up, district judge Michael Rosenburg found that the Segway is a motor vehicle: "Although this is by no means an easy matter to determine I am inexorably driven to the conclusion that I am satisfied to the required standard that the Segway is a motor vehicle and the allegation is therefore proved."

It hasn't been a popular decision and former politician and current stand-up 'comedian' Lembit Opik, appeared in court in support of Mr Coates.

It seems foolish to us that the Segway, which is only capable of speeds of up to 12mph can't be allowed on UK roads, as it's hardly a dangerous to pedestrians or other vehicles. In fact, the only high-profile cases of Segway injury have occurred to the driver, with George Bush falling off one and Segway owner Jimi Hesleden driving his off a cliff.

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