Man fined $600 in first-ever court conviction for riding non-compliant PMD

SINGAPORE - A 40-year-old man was fined $600 on Tuesday (July 16) for riding an e-scooter that was 6cm wider than the prescribed 70cm limit on a public path.

Loh Izel Feizal, who is currently behind bars for drug-related offences, has become the first person in Singapore to be convicted in court over his use of a non-compliant personal mobility device (PMD).

The court heard that he rode the e-scooter along Mountbatten Road at around 7pm on May 15 last year.

Land Transport Authority (LTA) prosecutor Daniel Marini said that the authority takes a serious view of non-compliant PMDs used on public paths as they endanger public safety.

He told the court that the requirements on the weight, width and speed of PMDs are imposed to protect the public; to minimise the potential harm as well as the likelihood of accidents occurring.

Mr Marini added: "There is an ever-increasing prevalence of incidents involving PMDs and there is a need for general deterrence.

"It was reported that about 1,700 active mobility offences were detected in the first half of 2019, of which about 30 per cent... were related to riders using non-compliant devices."

The Straits Times reported on July 2 that more than 85,000 e-scooters had been registered with the LTA before the deadline to do so ended on June 30.

In an earlier statement, the LTA said that of the total, almost 1,000 registrations were recorded on the last day.

Five days later, The Sunday Times said that the number of reported accidents involving PMDs on public paths had increased.

There were 228 such cases in 2017 and last year. Of these, 196 resulted in injuries and one rider died after his PMD skidded.

With the passing of the June 30 deadline, it is now illegal for PMD users to ride, cause or allow another person to ride an unregistered e-scooter on public paths.

Registration for e-scooters opened on Jan 2 this year to deter reckless riding and to facilitate enforcement efforts against errant riders.

Those who registered must be at least 16 years old and declare that their e-scooters do not exceed 20kg in weight and 70cm in width. The e-scooter's motorised device speed should also be capped at 25kmh.

First-time offenders convicted of riding a non-compliant PMD on a public path can be jailed for up to three months and fined up to $5,000.

Repeat offenders can be jailed for up to six months and fined up to $10,000.

Meanwhile on Monday, 48-year-old Aidel Ja'apar was fined $700 after becoming the first person in Singapore to be convicted of riding a non-compliant power-assisted bicycle under the Active Mobility Act.

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