A CONSERVATIVE party politician is calling for cyclists and pesky e-scooter drivers to be banned from using their phones while zipping around.
Pickering’s Baroness McIntosh wants the law changed immediately so both groups are prosecuted in the same way as motorists.
She lashed out at users on two wheels who used cellphones “inappropriately” and accused e-scooter riders of “absolutely terrorizing” Britons.
It comes as the significant other was almost knocked out near Parliament by a reckless cyclist who had “one hand on the bike, one hand on the cell phone on the wrong side of the road”.
Baroness McIntosh, 67, said of the incident: “I didn’t realize if he was going to stop or not.”
She is now calling on the government to “create criminal offenses related to dangerous, careless and reckless cycling for users of pedal bikes, electronically assisted bicycles and e-scooters”.
The former MP for Vale of York also called on the Department for Transport why she hadn’t already addressed the subject.
There is no specific offense for a cyclist using a phone, but a minister pointed out that cyclists can be prosecuted for negligent or dangerous cycling.
Such an offense carries a hefty fine of up to £2,500.
Baroness McIntosh’s calls for a change in the law come after January updates to the Highway Code.
These included a hierarchy of road users aimed at protecting vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclists.
The former MP questioned why Rule 149 of the Code, which requires motorists to “maintain proper control of their vehicle at all times” and prohibits the use of a mobile phone while driving, does not apply to cyclists and other road users.
The usage of E-scooters are completely illegal on most public roads in the UK – whether or not the owner uses a mobile phone while driving.
Electric scooters can only be used in areas where an official rental system operates. This is part of an ongoing government trial across the country.
It is not a particular offense to ride a bicycle and use a mobile phone or headphones
Baroness Vere von Norbiton, Minister of Transport
E-scooters may be used on private property.
But Transport Secretary Baroness Vere von Norbiton insisted existing laws already banned cyclists and e-scooter riders from using mobile phones.
She said: “It is not a specific offense to ride a bicycle and use a mobile phone or headphones.
“But cyclists and e-bike riders can be prosecuted by the police for negligent and dangerous cycling with maximum fines of £1,000 and £2,500 respectively.”
She said regulations in the government’s current e-scooter trial already state that it’s a criminal offense to use a handheld cellphone while operating one.
Lady Vere added that rule-breakers could be fined and receive six penalty points if they break the rules.
Baroness McIntosh of Pickering was Member of Parliament for the Vale of York from 1997 to 2010 and then for the Vale of York until 2015
https://www.thesun.ie/motors/8625863/cyclist-escooter-riders-mobile-phones-baroness-mcintosh/ Calls for cyclists and e-scooter drivers to be banned from using their phones on the road