Many people follow latest trends in terms of technological innovations. The Indian population, being more open to the world, do not escape this rule. Electric mobility devices in general and e-skateboards in particular are on the rise in the country. So if you are residing in India or planning to visit the country and are wandering whether electric skateboards are legal? Here is your answer!
Yes, they s are legal in India. This is because there is simply no official legislature stating whether or not the use of e-skateboards is prohibited. Moreover, skateboarding is big in India, so you can ride yours without getting into trouble. There is a big skateboarding community there and if it was illegal, they wouldn’t exist.
Where can you ride your electric skateboard in India?
As there is no law making it legal, you have to operate sensibly to avoid any problems. There are many places where you can ride your electric skateboard but not all of them are advised. To ensure your experience is pleasant and you don’t get in trouble, you need to ride in the appropriate places. Some of the most popular places where people ride electric skateboards without any problems include the following.
Whatever you do with your electric skateboard on private property is your business. If the property isn’t yours, ensure you get the owner’s permission. You may only be able to ride for fun here, but at least, it offers a great practice arena.
There are many skate parks all across India. It has even led to major skateboarding names visiting India to further promote the activity! The skate parks offer a more professional environment and are well equipped for advanced practitioners.
Where should you avoid riding an electric skateboard in India?
It is simply a bad idea to ride an electric skateboard in certain places. It’s not a matter of legality, but rather, it can be of safety or freedom. Regardless of the reason, you may want to stay away from these select areas. Some of the places you shouldn’t ride your electric skateboard include:
With the kind of vehicles and speeds found on the highway, it is ill-advised to ride an electric skateboard there. There may be no one to stop you from riding your electric skateboards here, but you should know better. The chances of you getting hit by another vehicle on the highway are very high and as such, you should avoid it altogether!
Roads with heavy traffic
Heavily crowded roads are very prevalent in India and should also be avoided. In such situations, an electric skateboard rider is unsafe and can be hit by a vehicle easily. This recommendation is in the interest of rider safety and should be taken seriously. There are better alternatives all across India, including roads with lower speed limits. Here, the electric skateboard rider can operate at speeds that aren’t far behind those of the vehicles present.
The sidewalks are relatively safe for you to ride your electric skateboards but you probably shouldn’t ride there. If you live in a city with a low population, you can ride on the sidewalk safely. As these are rare in India, the odds of you finding a scarcely populated sidewalk is low. On the sidewalks, the pedestrians are the ones who are unsafe with an electric skateboard present!
Problems electric skateboard riders may face in India
While we may ponder the legality of the electric skateboard in India, people still ride them. The only issue is that there are certain issues a rider may encounter using an electric skateboard. The most common problems an electric skateboard rider will likely face in India include:
Unsurfaced roads are very common all across India with many roads being this way. Electric skateboards move best on smooth roads and surfaces, which is absent in an unsurfaced road. The biggest challenge here is that electric skateboards require more power to operate here. Thus, the battery may not last as much, or you put a greater strain on the motor. Either way, unsurfaced roads pose a great problem to electric skateboards.
Cracks and holes
As is common with untarred roads, there may be holes and cracks present. This poses a challenge and safety risk to you. If you are not careful, you can crash and get injured. As a result, the use of helmets and other safety gear is advised, but not mandatory. Holes and cracks don’t allow you to ride an electric skateboard smoothly. This can prove annoying prompting some people to abandon their electric skateboards.
Oil spills are surprisingly common on the roads in India. This makes the rods slippery and hence, dangerous for electric skateboards. Coupled with the fact that the roads may have holes and cracks, oil spills are very dangerous. If you are not careful, it can cause fatal crashes or accidents, and great damage as well. It is best to steer clear of roads with oil spills.
No bike or skateboard lanes
Bike lanes are the most popular choice for riding electric skateboards in places where they exist. There are no bicycles or electric skateboard lanes anywhere in India. This leaves riders to use the roads or sidewalks if they are in a hurry to get somewhere. Roads are designed for faster vehicles and may be unsafe for you to ride your electric skateboard!
As the law doesn’t expressly state whether or not electric skateboards are legal, it is open to interpretation. Some policemen may decide to trouble you and begin to ask questions. One rider advises you to simply pretend you’re riding a normal skateboard if you see a policeman! In most cases though, as long as you aren’t moving too fast, they probably won’t bother you.
Do I need a license?
No, you don’t need to get or have a license to operate an electric skateboard in India. The law doesn’t recognize electric skateboards and does not account for them. If you tried to get a license for your electric skateboard, you wouldn’t be able to. There is no legal provision to license or register an electric skateboard or a rider. The law sees electric skateboards in the same category as regular skateboards. They are viewed as recreational vehicles and thus do not need to be licensed. It is up to the electric skateboard rider to operate responsibly and ensure they don’t attract unwanted attention.
Do I need insurance?
No, you don’t need to have insurance either to operate an electric skateboard in public. To be clear, having insurance would be a welcome opportunity but there isn’t provision to insure electric skateboards. Insurance would normally cover you if you are involved in a crash and cause property damage. In addition, it could cover medical scenarios for any injuries you may sustain while riding. However, electric skateboards aren’t legally classified as vehicles, so they can’t have insurance. There are safety standards expected before you can insure a vehicle and electric skateboards don’t meet these standards. You can simply make sure you have medical coverage that covers injuries so you won’t worry in case of injuries!
Can I ride on the sidewalk?
Yes, people do ride an electric skateboard on the sidewalk but this probably isn’t a good idea. India is a very populated country and in certain cities, the population is a major issue. Sidewalks are built for pedestrians and with a large population, the sidewalk is bound to be crowded. The sidewalks are made for pedestrians and it is best to allow them to use them. If you are involved in an accident on the sidewalk, you will be held responsible. If there is another alternative, you will be better served to ride your electric skateboard here. Luckily, numerous alternatives are usually available and are better alternatives to sidewalks.
India has witnessed a massive growth in personal mobility devices in general and in electric skateboards in particular. And despite no laws governing their use were introduced yet, we can speculate that nothing forbids you to use them from a legal standpoint. In practice however, be careful where to ride your device in the country, be attentive to the street dwellers (vehicles and people alike). Also, try to use your common sense and avoid any useless clashes with policemen. This way you should be fine wherever you are in the country!