back to article Yorks cops charge Segway rider under 1835 road law

South Yorkshire Police have charged a Segway rider with breaking the 1835 Highways Act by riding the gyro-hog on the pavement. Phillip Coates, 51, was collared by coppers in his native town of Barnsley while whooshing down to the shops on the self-balancing two wheeler, The Star reports. A local copper stopped him because he …

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Saw someone riding one on the road

In Kingston on Thames the other week... Confusing and struck me as pretty damn dangerous...

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Unhappy

Legal Stuff

It seems the legal argument will rest on whether a vehicle powered by an electric motor can be considered as a 'motor vehicle'. They actually get paid for this.

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Badgers

Dangerous Greens

Imagine the G-Wiz carnage on Britain's pavements!

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Boffin

As ever, it depends

Electric bikes aren't classed as motor vehicles in law unless they top 15mph under power.

Segways only manage 12.5mph.

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Go

So it was legal

Segways ARE bicycles. Two wheels- that's the literal translation of Bicycle!

It's a 2-wheeled electric vehicle that fits nicely into the "not a motor vehicle" category. This should be a quick and easy victory for the defence.

And then I'm buying one.

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Stop

No bikes on the pavment!

Peddle bikes, electric bikes and even granny scooters are not permitted on the pavements and subject to a fine of £30.

So unless he can persuade them it is a shoe I don't think they will be allowed in future.

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Except...

...that riding a bike on the pavement is also illegal!

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Correction

Actually mobility scooters are allowed on the pavements as long as they don't exceed 4mph. The larger ones that do 8mph are only allowed on the roads.

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4MPH

OK, I might like to walk faster but 4MPH is still a lot faster than most people walk. I hate to bring up the "Think of the kids" argument, but many of our pavements are infested with sub-adult creatures who are quite out of control of their disinterested parents. These things are going to do a lot of damage to a toddler I don't fancy being hit one.

I don't know what the answer is, probably there should be some sort of driving test and a license to use one which can be revoked for inconsiderate use.

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Good!!

There's a loony old twit who rides one of these things on the footpaths round Huddersfield. Goes flat out up behind people then slows and swerves at the last minute.

Whether they're classed as motor vehicles or not, they've no place on a footpath.

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Point proved

So if one man drives his car and 100 miles an hour in a 40 zone we should ban all drivers from our roads?

Seriously?

So long as bikes, motorised bikes, skateboards and the like are used responsibly then there is no reason for them not to be on the footpaths or anywhere else for that matter (ok so not on motorways) but just because some old codger in your town drives like a lunatic does not mean that everyone should shoulder the responsibility of his dangerous driving. Get real dude ;-)

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Stop

eh?

A footpath is for foot traffic

By your logic bicycles and mopeds should be ridden on the pavements as well as long as they are ridden "sensibly"

The problem in much of the UK is that the pavement isn't wide enough to allow shared use and pedestrians need protection from mechanisation.

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JCL
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Real?

Absolutely, I'm sick of leaving stores and risking getting mown down by bikes and such like. @Matthew - I'm not sure it's MontyPole who needs to get real...

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Pah

I'd like to chip in my 2p worth: Whenever I see a cyclist on the pavement (subject to them being over about 12) I am filled with an urge to shout: "GROW UP, You're a big boy/girl now use the road, or get off and push." There have been many cases where cyclist have actually killed people while they've been cycling on the pavement and there is no excuse. The addition of a motor makes it worse.

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Oh, really??

"...pedestrians need protection from mechanisation."

Here in Finland we can ride a bike or a moped on the footpath, FFS. Indeed, in some parts of the city, riding a bike on the road'll get you a fine..We built the fuc*king footpaths with this in mind. Gerrit?

http://mopot.us/artikkelit/harjoituksia/liikennesaannot/kuvat/sallittumopoille.gif

(Sallitu Mopoille = Permitted for mopeds)

Maybe mechanisation (sheep, ass, goats, Fred Dibner enthusiasts, etc.) need protection from jay-walking or 'stuck-the-bluetooth-in-and-don't-look-where-the-fuc*k-I'm-going' pedestrians...

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Unhappy

next step then...

I've never seen these segways in towns, maybe it's just south of england that gets them, but up 'ere in t'north we don't need that sort of namby pamby stuff... personally - I think umbrella's need banning first... I don't see why my eye needs to be sacrificed daily just because some girl or man in a suit doesn't want to get a tiny bit wet, or refuses to use an umbrella that doesn't have razor-sharp spikes. :)

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WTF?

Are all Finnish signs so unintuitive?

I will take you at your word that Sallitu Mopoille = Permitted for mopeds, but if it does then that sign is almost non-sensical given the picture is of a man holding a childs hand.

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Not really.

It's a standard pedestrian walkway sign with the allowed for mopeds tacked underneath. If you read Finnish you understand it if you don't then you should learn :)

I will say however that bikers in Finland are irritating, pavements are wide and they still seem to be able to almost run into you from behind and then shout at you for being in their way. If you're not on foot you belong on the road, I think that's simple.

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IT Angle

Learn Finnsh??

Only if you really want to go insane!

22 variants of (the)* English word 'what' -- Mikä, mitä, mitkä, minä. ...etc.

Godawfully difficult, but rewarding, honestly. I'm loving learning it. It's structured like a programming language, hence the IT angle...

*There's no definite or indefinite pronouns. Neither do 'he' or 'she' exist.. Just 'Hän'.

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Anonymous Coward

Should be interesting

So say plod wins this, will they then go and nick all the mobility scooters and cars, that use both the road and pavements.

I thought not, though I would then go for harrisment if I got nicked again on my segway

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Banned...

just like the mobility scooter and electric wheelchair.

the law needs to be refined to allow personal mobility assistance.

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It already is

Class 2 and 3 mobility scooters are permitted on the pavement, but restricted to 4mph.

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How much?

4MPH? If that's the limit then there are a lot of old lawbreakers riding round my town terrorising the walkers.

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Anonymous Coward

4mph!

My arse!

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Others

There is an 8mph category of mobility scooter, but those are restricted to the road only (ones with 4/8mph speed controls can use either pavement or road, but must use the appropriate speed for the situation). Curiously, the driver of a mobility scooter cannot be prosecuted for causing death by dangerous driving....

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Surely you're confusing..

..mobility scooters with the council's sit-on lawnmowers. Both usually driven by geriatrics, but the latter wear orange ear-defenders with "Council Property" written on them, which is how you can easily differentiate.

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Troll

speaking as a yorkshireman

i find a segway far to posh for the down t'earth street of gods county* get back down t'earth cocker!

*if such an omnipitant being existed of course.....

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Coat

We used to DREAM of 'aving English teachers..

That is all.

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Anonymous Coward

Sounds right to me.

That sounds about right to me - if you argue that they're not in the same class as motobikes or cars (Need a tax disc), you can only really claim that they're in the same category as bicycles. You can ride a bike on the road without needing a disc, but go on the pavement and it's a fine.

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Grenade

Unless you're vaguely connected to the police

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=slLpJZ_fYr8

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motorised

Or self Balancing !!!!

i would go for that if i was the defense

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Anonymous Coward

hmm...

So how do you get them to go forward? Do you have to push them? Could help as part of a fitness regime after all.

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Get them off the pavement

There are enough problems round here with mobility scooters trying to mow down pedestrians. This guy might drive his Segway carefully and with consideration for other users of the pavement, but if he wins then soon enough there will be plenty of selfish/arrogant b*******ds threatening life & limb.

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Pint

If not illegal, most definitely ridden by nutters!

Saw some plank the other day riding down Piccadilly pavements on one. Suited and booted, coffee in hand holding the handlebars and phone in the ear with the other hand! People having to move aside for the ass-hat!

Sorry but your favourite deity gave you Shanksy's Pony, use it!

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FAIL

They're not bicycles

They were banned from Amsterdam after a tour company started Segway tours of the city using the bike paths. It's got 2 wheels and an engine, how is it different to a motorbike?

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Anonymous Coward

No engine actually

Just a motor. But far be it from me to defend these bizarre things.

On the road, just like the cyclists, please.

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Anonymous Coward

"how is it different to a motorbike?"

In a number of highly conspicuous ways including the fact that it is clearly a Segway.

That said, I would agree that they shouldn't be on the pavements. But given that I've never even seen one in real life, they don't annoy me half as much as those damn wheelie suitcases that allow their owners to drag around the highly important cargo of cinnamon flavour dental floss that they no doubt must have wherever they go.

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Stop

additional charge

Of being a pretentious git in a public area.

He's actually quite lucky it was the cops that stopped him. Barnsley isn't exactly known for its tolerance of "posh buggers" (pretentious is too big a word there*)

*i live in Sheffield. Barnsley is the only place we're allowed to look down on as 'rural'...!

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So which law should he be charged under?

The Highways Act of 1835 is the appropriate statute for this charge. Just because the law has been on the books for a while, doesn't make it obsolete. In fact, its a shame some more recent legislation isn't as carefully thought out.

Motorised or not, you are not allowed to ride a segway on a footpath, just as you are not permitted to drive or cycle along one.

http://www.statutelaw.gov.uk/content.aspx?activeTextDocId=1032567

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The use of the word 'carriage' is a good one

Because it's not too specific and can be extended to other forms of wheeled transport without requiring the text of the law to be rewritten. It's left to the courts to decide if a mode of transport is a carriage or not. If only more law was written like this (but then I'd prefer Roman Law anyway rather than our system, but that's getting me started...)

Meanwhile.

There's a similar case; Corkery v Carpenter (1950), where a man was found guilty of being drunk in charge of a 'carriage' under the Licensing Act of 1872. The court ruled (and it has been subsequently upheld) that bicycles constitute carriages, so I don't think there's much hope of this case deciding otherwise.

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Thanks for the link..

..as I read it, the Highways Act 1835 requires TWO 'Justices of the peace' to decide.

That'll bung the costs up, nowadays there's usually (in a magistrates court) only one, IIRC. (Haven't been nicked in UK for awhile)

I'm not a lawyer, but as a British Citizen I'm expected to have full competence of the law, as "Ignorantia legis neminem excusat". = ignorance of the law excuses no one.

Oh, I also need Latin fluency, too. Maybe so I can have a seance with some long-dead Romans?

Bloody legal system's blatant arrogance.

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back in the eighties

there were quite a few cases where the police were targetting skateboarders with the same law, basically the 'willfully using a carriage of any kind' bit. I'm not sure if anybody ever got prosecuted, I assume not as there were never any followup articles in the skate mags of the time. Always seemed a bit petty to me, stopping people under sixteen and threatening them with court, for riding a board on the pavement ...

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Coffee/keyboard

Speed???

I would prefer something faster than a Segway to get out of Barnsley........

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Joke

Leaving Barnsley...

Barnsley escape velocity is multiplied by 2 to the the power of the number of tarts there...

(OK, You get the icon, yes?)

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Happy

Legal beagle

I'm impressed his solicitor seems more interested in the case law aspect than her the defence of her client!

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1835 Highways Act?

It was all horses and carts then. Plus a few primitive bicycles.

It makes interesting reading though.

"and if a highway is out of repair, the parish surveyor may be summoned before the courts and ordered to complete the repairs within a limited time."

Has that happened lately?

Offences include: "Not having the owner's name painted up [on the cart].

That could have been a nice little earner for the government as car owners have been breaking the law for the past century.

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Is your name on your tax disc?

If your name is on the tax disc, you're in the clear. I can't remember if it is and can't be bothered to go outside in the rain and check.

I do like the idea of summoning the parish surveyor to court and limiting the time to repair.

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Grenade

Oh good

So next time I happen upon a parked up police mobile I'll have have to check for presence of said owner's name and in its absence request the occupants to report themselves for breaching the terms of the 1835 Highways Act. Something to look forward to... :)

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heyy

I like the highway being repaired in a certain amount of time

Not having the owners name painted could easily be reclassified as number plate

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Loads of laughs, that

"Offences include: "Not having the owner's name painted up [on the cart]."

If you get convicted, bring a private prosecution against the magistrate who sends you down for not having his name on his Jag (and yes, they always drive Jags - it's practically a precondition of acceptance).

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