Safe on the road if I drive safely?

Hi all, long time lurker first time poster. Apologies if this is posted in the wrong section.

I’m constantly being told by both local and foreign friends that driving or scooting on the roads, even in Taipei, is really unsafe. I’ve read up on some pretty bad stories here too, but it seems that despite this unanimous assessment, those self-same locals and foreigners are still driving and scooting. Are they as unreasonable as those who drive recklessly on the road? Or is it actually possible to be safe, if one takes the necessary precautions?

For context, I’m thinking of getting a scooter to commute daily from a 新店/烏來 mountainside apartment to 師大 as, while I love the city, I don’t love rent and cramped spaces.

I’ll be going for my scooter license next week, I have no experience driving a scooter, but I’ve never had an accident that I’ve caused while driving a car in Australia for the past 10 years.


I drive a car and pass by on average one scooter accident a day. Can’t quite remember but I think 4 or 5 in one day was the record. I drove a lot that day.

Haven’t seen too many that looked very serious - blood and guts on road - most of them the riders are standing up already.

But you do read and watch on TV daily scooter deaths

25 years scooting, never an accident, touch wood. Safe as houses. Just develop mad peripheral vision and anticipate everything you can.


No matter how safe you are, there are others who are not safe and you cannot protect against them.

Could simply be sitting at a stoplight and someone plows through you from behind.


OP, the above is excellent advice, especially because it feels like a large number of local drivers don’t do this. I’ve been driving a scooter for ten years here in wild Taoyuan and have had two injury accidents requiring ambulance rides to the hospital.

One was an old guy on a scooter who simply didn’t look where he was going. He came out from between parked cars and darted right in front of me. I couldn’t anticipate that because I couldn’t see him waiting between the parked cars, and it was so sudden that there was no way to avoid him. His lack of driving awareness cost me a broken ankle and a broken rib. He was uninjured.

The other incident was purely an accident: I came around a mountain road bend and hit an oil slick in the road. I immediately went down at full speed. Luckily there were no other cars on the road at the time. Ended up with two broken ribs that time. Simply bad luck as there was no way to know about some random spilled oil in the road.

Anyway, OP, don’t be too frightened. People drive cars, scooters, etc. every day. Drive defensively, and always assume the other drivers are selfish and completely unaware. You’ll be right more often than you might think.


I see cars passing in red/yellow ligth everyday even buses. And also I saw so many accident in the streets. Taiwaneses drive scooters really fast

Just from observance my feeling is that it’s not too bad if you are attentive and don’t do any of the stupid or reckless stuff so many other people do.

There are a few rules to stay safe when riding a scooter:

  1. Always ride on the sidewalks if possible.
  2. Don’t ride on roads shared with cars or other scooters.
  3. Only ride on sunny days.
  4. Don’t drink and ride.
1 Like

Very dangerous in the south, no soul is ever safe there.


1 Like