The police have pledged to crack down on e-scooters after a cyclist was seriously injured in a crash with one in Brighton and an officer was hurt by a rider.
Another rider died after crashing into a fence near Falmer railway station in the summer and the police said that evidence was growing of the popularity of e-scooters among drug dealers.
Yesterday (Tuesday 16 November) Sussex Police said that a 25-year-old e-scooter rider was found with cannabis on him.
When his Littlehampton home was searched, officers found more cannabis as well as a stash of cocaine, about £1,000 cash, scales and dealing bags and a large zombie-style knife.
Now the force has vowed to step up patrols and enforcement aimed at cracking down on the illegal use of e-scooters.
Sussex police and crime commissioner Katy Bourne said: “While I am a big supporter of more environmentally friendly transport solutions, we need to make it clear that e-scooters cannot legally be used in public spaces in Sussex.
“I have heard from many residents, including elderly people, who have been menaced and injured by irresponsible e-scooter riders.
“From police experience it seems that people who are prepared to break the law with no insurance or a valid licence are using e-scooters in drug dealing and other criminal activity which makes them a visible target for officers.
“Be warned. Your e-scooter can be seized and you can be fined or may injure yourself or someone else – so don’t put them on your Christmas wish list.”
Sussex Police said: “Across the country there are ‘Future Transport’ trials taking place, with the aim of gaining further insight into the environmental, health and safety benefits of these types of vehicles.
“Currently there are no areas in Sussex taking part in these trials and e-scooters remain illegal to use on public roads.”
Chief Inspector Michael Hodder said that safety was important, adding: “We will take action against anyone breaking the law.
“This could mean seizing the e-scooter and it could result in prosecution for using a motor vehicle without insurance or the appropriate licence.
“Our main aim is to keep people safe and reduce harm and injury on our roads.”
As well as having their scooters confiscated, those convicted could be fined and have penalty points added to their driving licence.
For more information and advice about electric scooters, click here.
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