Police Scotland are urging people who are considering buying an e-scooter for Christmas to fully understand the law and the implications of riding one in a public place.
It is perfectly legal to buy an e-scooter, however currently only rented share scheme e-scooters covered by a motor vehicle insurance policy can be used in public areas.
In a bid to “dispel and address some of the myths about where you can and can't ride e-scooters,” Police Scotland point out that it is against the law to ride a privately-owned e-scooter on roads or pavements, in parks or town centres.
The only place they can be used is on private land with the agreement of the land owner.
Despite these limitations on use, the vehicles saw a surge in sales last Christmas. This resulted in one senior Metropolitan Police officer suggesting that anyone who had received one should return it.
Attempting to catch people before they invest, Police Scotland highlight the fact that e-scooters are classified as personal light electric vehicles (PLEVs) and subject to the same legal requirements as any other motor vehicle.
Deputy head of road policing, Superintendent Simon Bradshaw, said: “We understand that e-scooters are a tempting option for Christmas presents this year.
“It is important, however, to make it clear these are not toys and they are illegal to use in public.
“If an e-scooter is on your Christmas wish list, make sure you know how and where to use them safely."
A number of retailers have called for privately-owned e-scooters to be made road legal, but a decision on that has been pushed back by the government and is now unlikely before March of next year.
In the meantime, they remain available for purchase.
Last month West Midlands Assistant Police and Crime Commissioner Tom McNeil wrote to a number of High Street shops, urging them to withdraw e-scooters from sale.
McNeil said stores were, “profiting from the confusion,” concluding: “This is simply immoral and must stop.”