Segways and motorised self-balancing boards
Segways and various motorised self-balancing boards (commonly referred to as hoverboards) are two wheeled self-balancing personal transport vehicles. They are well known examples of motorised wheeled recreational devices or wheeled toys.
It is illegal to use a Segway on a public street, except as part of a commercial tour where the Department of State Growth has approved and issued a Short Term Unregistered Vehicle Permit (STUVP).
It is illegal to ride a motorised self-balancing board on a public street.
As Segways and motorised self-balancing boards and other motorised wheeled recreational devices are classed as a 'motor vehicle' under the Vehicle and Traffic Act 1999 to be used on public street, they must be registered, and users must hold an appropriate driver licence. Segways and motorised self-balancing boards cannot be registered because they are not manufactured to the Australian Design Rules which are the national standards for road vehicles.
What is a 'public street'?
A 'public street' includes anywhere the public have access. Parks, beaches and recreational areas as well as roads and footpaths are included.
What will happen if I use a Segway in public?
If you use a self-balancing scooter or Segway (where a STUVP has not been issued by the department for that Segway), you can be fined for driving an unregistered vehicle, driving without a licence, and driving a vehicle that does not comply with the vehicle standards. Importantly you will not be covered for compulsory Third party insurance (ie MAIB) in the event of an accident.
Can I get a permit to use a Segway?
The department will only issue a STUVP to commercial operators to use Segways for tours, and conditions will be applied to ensure that Segways are used safely.
STUVP will not be issued to individuals, for work related purposes or any other reason.
I want to operate Segway tours. How can I apply for a permit?
Commercial operators wishing to run Segway tours should apply in writing to:
The Registrar of Motor Vehicles
GPO Box 1002
Segway Tours - Using a Segway
Is it legal to ride a Segway when on a tour?
Only if you are using the Segway as part of a commercial tour where the department has issued a STUVP for the Segway. (The tour group operators will be able to confirm this.)
What licence do I need to ride a Segway as part of a tour?
You don't need a licence to operate a Segway where a STUVP has been issued for its use.
What conditions are applied when I ride a Segway as part of a tour?
Riders must obey the conditions set out in the STUVP and follow instructions given by the tour guide. The conditions state that the rider must:
- wear a helmet
- travel under 12km/h
- be at least 12 years old
- weigh between 45 and 117kg
- have blood alcohol content of zero
- be of a height so their elbows are at least as high as the Segway's handle bar when standing on the platform
A number of other conditions are imposed on the tour operator. These are listed on the STUVP which the tour operator must have at all times when Segways are being used.
Why are conditions applied to Segways?
Conditions are applied to ensure the safety of riders, pedestrians and other road users. A Segway is not a toy - if not used safely, Segway riders may injure themselves or others.
If you are unsure whether you can use a Segway in a certain area or have any other questions please contact Service Tasmania on 1300 135 513 or international +61 3 6233 8011.