Are all electric scooters VMP?

The plenary session of the Criminal Chamber of the Supreme Court has demanded a clearer administrative classification for electric scooters or personal mobility vehicles (VMP), given their impact on road safety, in a ruling confirming the acquittal of a woman accused of a crime of driving without a license, and where the key question was whether the vehicle she was driving was a VMP or a moped.

The Chamber has underlined that “the new social reality shown by the multitude of devices with the characteristics of VMPs” should lead to a clearer administrative classification, or else the prompt requirement of an administrative certification, which certifies the technical configuration necessary for its circulation.

Likewise, the Supreme Court has demanded that the appropriate considerations be taken on the need, or not, to “need some type of license, knowledge or technical ability” to circulate with these new vehicles.

The Criminal Chamber has concluded that it is not possible “today” to incriminate VMP driving in violations and crimes against road safety, unless fraudulent use is made of these categories to camouflage, after an apparent classification as VMP , “what is a moped”. In that case, the regulations referring to the license requirement, and other regulations, such as the mandatory nature of a helmet or insurance, would be flouted.

A statement for which data is missing

The Chamber has confirmed a sentence of the Provincial Court of Murcia, which acquitted a woman of a crime of driving without a permit or license on the understanding that the vehicle she was driving did not have the legal status of a moped, so she did not need a license to drive it . The vehicle in question had two wheels, an accelerator and a saddle, but other substantial data was missing, such as the speed it could reach and whether or not it had a self-balancing system.

Said sentence was appealed by the prosecutor to the Supreme Court, which has ruled on this issue after verifying the existence of contradictory sentences of different provincial courts in relation to this matter.

“The proven facts of the sentence must include those configurative elements of the vehicle with which the accused was driving, such as its power, its maximum speed, whether or not it has a seat, whether it has a self-balancing system and, how many other characteristics are necessary for its classification” has underlined the high court.

In this way, the appropriate permit or driving license can be clearly required, and, in short, “in the absence of the documentary elements that appear in the records, its categorization is required through the appropriate expert opinion that is necessary for its determination” , added the Supreme.

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