Electric scooters: Stand still and these modern-day dinosaurs can't get you (I think) – Hayley Matthews

I've just witnessed my fourth electric scooter zoom past me on the pavement in a week, and yes, I'm counting!

Saturday, 10th July 2021, 4:55 am
An electric scooter is used legally in London as part of a year-long trial (Picture: Leon Neal/Getty Images)
An electric scooter is used legally in London as part of a year-long trial (Picture: Leon Neal/Getty Images)

Normally when I see a group of young teens in our area whizzing about, swerving in and out of folk, I just think to myself "they're just kids, they're just having fun".

I tend to make excuses for teens because if my behaviour as a teen is anything to go by, well let's just say the bar isn't set that high, although I did have my reasons. But this person hurtling towards us was different and it threw me.

A woman, easily in her late 40s (who some might call a dinosaur, not my term, it's what the kids call us middle-aged folk now) was zooming towards me, squinting at the sun with her headphones on and, dare I say it, oblivious to the fact there were many people walking towards her as she bombed along the crowded pavement like Marty McFly!

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Away in her own wee world, I wondered how she came to decide that speeding down a heavily pedestrianised Leith Walk was a good idea? Surely she'd rather use the cycle lane? Surely they'd all rather use the cycle lane?

But to be honest, they're not allowed on that either. I can't imagine the joy in whizzing along at 10mph (which is fast!), navigating around people on the pavement. I think I'd rather run down the street, naked with hairy armpits shouting "the light has won" than I would ride an electric scooter.

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Am I old? A fuddy duddy? A spoil sport? Or am I just saying what the majority of people are thinking and asking what the hell are all these speed-freaks doing on the pavement?

Electric scooter riders and Tyrannosaurus rex dinosaurs have one thing in common, reckons Hayley Matthews (Picture: Joe Giddens/PA)

Mind you, I don't know where they present more danger, being on the pavement or driving on the road! It's like trying to navigate around the Tasmanian devil on wheels! I've seen them zoom down the cycle lane, nearly taking cyclists out, drive in to groups of people and skip the red lights too. So what's the law on them?

On speaking to a retired police officer, who also has a buzz in his car bonnet about them, he mentioned anything with wheels and a motor is classed as a vehicle and should be on the road. The electric scooters come under the description of a vehicle, yet they're not legally allowed on the road, or the pavement for that matter – just private land.

I could see I wasn't the only person who detests these things and think the people on them are insane to be driving on any surface other than their garden path.

So how can you protect yourself if faced with one of these beasts hurtling towards you? What’s been working for me is to treat them like a T-Rex.

If you've seen Jurassic Park (the 90s one), then you'll know that if you stand still when a T-Rex is chasing after you, you're good. Yes it's that simple, if you don't move, then you're safe because they somehow are only able to see moving objects.

Well I've been applying the same logic to the electric scooters and it's worked for me so far. So next time you see a dinosaur on an illegal vehicle zooming towards you, just remember the T-Rex scene from Jurassic Park, stand still for dear life and you should be fine!

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