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Why using this new tech in Victoria could cost you a $136 fine

Most states classify anyone using an electric personal vehicle, such as a segway, as wheeled mobile devices and are generally banned from road use in most states.

However, Victoria has different rules to the rest of Australia as they actually class electric personal transporters as a vehicle sub-class with their own unique set of road rules.

It's a unique set of road rules that also comes with its own set of punishments. So how do these regulations work?

Segway riders in a park.
Segways and other transporters have their own road rules in Victoria. Source: Getty Images (Daniiielc via Getty Images)

Road rules for electric personal vehicles

In Victoria, the government has seen enough use of electric personal vehicles to class them as a type of vehicle and it means they need to follow road rules set out by the state’s government.

In this class of vehicle, it covers a whole range of quirky and unique devices currently surging in popularity across the country such as:

  • Hoverboards

  • Segways

  • Any self-balancing vehicle

With these gadgets unable to display a licence plate or be registered with VicRoads, it means that they are illegal to use on Victorian public roads unless they are given a special exemption.

These exemptions only come in the shape of official tours where groups of vehicles are often seen travelling in a specific area at any given time.

It means they can only be used on paths and are treated in these areas in a similar fashion to an electric scooter or a bicycle.

Close up of man riding a hoverboard.
Hoverboards and other balancing vehicles are also covered by these rules. Source: Getty Images (Isbjorn via Getty Images)

Victoria Police ready to dish out fines

Most offences committed by anyone using an electric personal transporter are likely to incur a fine of $136 from Victoria Police.

This punishment covers a whole range of offences that someone could be caught doing such as:

  • Driving on roads

  • Not giving way to pedestrians or cyclists

  • Travelling at night

However, some rules can bring harsher penalties should people be caught breaking a general road rule that is applied to all vehicle classes.

For example, anyone who is caught using their phone while riding on a transporter will see their fine increased to $454 regardless of where they are doing it.

Furthermore, anyone deemed to be riding their device recklessly or without proper control could be fined $227 by Victoria Police if they deem their actions to be deliberate.

Man riding hoverboard on pavement.
Anyone riding these devices illegally could be fined a minimum of $136. Source: Getty Images (LanaStock via Getty Images)

It’s an interesting stance for authorities in The Garden State to take considering that they treat these vehicles separately to wheeled mobile vehicles unlike any of the other states.

With big fines potentially at play, it will be a good idea for users of these vehicles to be aware of these road rules and not get caught unaware when cruising on the streets of Melbourne.

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