Prince William electric scooter backlash prompts major safety warning to follow 'vital' rules

Prince William on an e-scooter

E-scooters are being trialled across the UK until May 31, 2026

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Hemma Visavadia

By Hemma Visavadia


Published: 09/07/2024

- 15:43

Updated: 09/07/2024

- 16:13

Prince William was caught riding without a helmet earlier this month

Riders of e-scooters have been warned to adhere to strict safety rules after footage of the Prince of Wales emerged depicting the royal not wearing a helmet.

According to Department for Transport guidelines, riders should wear a cycle helmet when using an e-scooter. Although not a legal requirement, wearing a helmet can increase user safety and should be the correct size and securely fastened.


The warning for riders comes after a video of the Prince riding around Windsor Castle was posted on social media.

Prince William was spotted riding around the royal grounds, where he is believed to frequently travel between Windsor Castle and his home, Adelaide Cottage,

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e-scooter

Scooters are available for hire across the UK

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In response to the video, a charity has called on e-scooter and e-bike users to take greater care while riding.

Giuseppe Capanna, product safety engineer at Electrical Safety First said: “Whether you’re Royalty or a regular rider, charging your e-scooter safely is vital.

“E-scooters and e-bikes, if purchased from a reputable retailer, used within the law and charged safely are no more dangerous than any other electric vehicle, but there are practices you can put in place to make sure you enjoy your device safely, to keep you and your family safe.

“Prince William will want to ensure he is using a compatible charger to ensure the battery receives the correct voltage.”

Capanna added that incompatible chargers can risk supplying a battery with the wrong voltage and make it unstable.

He explained that His Royal Highness should avoid charging the scooter overnight and away from any stairways or exit routes.

Offering advice to customers thinking of purchasing an electric scooter, the expert said to always purchase from a reputable retailer.

Britons should avoid third-party sellers on online marketplaces and “dubious sources” to ensure the product meets safety standards.

E-scooters have become more popular across the UK in recent years, with more local authorities operating them.

The Department for Transport has allowed e-scooter trials across the UK to run until May 31, 2026.

Hire e-scooters have specific safety features installed. For example, they are limited to a speed of 12.5mph and have lights that are always on throughout any rental.

The scooters are available in also available across the UK, with the Government estimating that around 30 trial schemes are in place.

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E-scooter rider in London

Britons must input their licence details to hire an e-scooter

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Giving riders further advice, Capanna stated that users must not modify battery packs as it can lead to fires.

Users should charge devices in a socket protected by a Residual Current Device and ensure there are working smoke alarms in the area.

Meanwhile, riders should avoid leaving batteries in direct sunlight or areas where they may be exposed to high temperatures.

In the case of a fire, he warned: “Do not attempt to extinguish it yourself. Evacuate the area and call the fire service immediately."

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