Councils cautious about e-scooter trial

The peak body for local government in NSW has expressed some concerns after the state government announced a council-led trial of e-scooters.

Darriea Turley

Active transport minister Rob Stokes announced on Thursday that councils will be invited to trial local-government led shared scheme e-scooter trials from July.

LGNSW president Darriea Turley says councils support active and sustainable transport options, but any policy around e-scooters must avoid potential downsides.

“E-scooters can be great in terms of being affordable, sustainable and convenience, so we want to ensure we benefit from the good while avoiding potential downsides, Cr Turley told Government News.

We don’t want the re-emergence of the problems we saw with e-bikes being dumped and abandoned in our communities, causing safety risks and blocking throughfares.

Cnr Darriea Turley

“For example, we don’t want the re-emergence of the problems we saw with e-bikes being dumped and abandoned in our communities, causing safety risks and blocking throughfares.”

Cr Turley also said councils don’t have the resources or capacity to ensure shared e-scooters aren’t left lying around the streets.

Safety for users and others around them was also incredibly important.

Councils simply don’t have the resources or capacity to go around collecting and removing share items such as e-scooters or e-bikes from the streets.

Cnr Darriea Turley

“Our children and older people have the same rights as everyone else to be able to use our footpaths without being skittled by a speeding scooter or bike,” she said.

“That means the Government may need to consider how to police them, or even innovative new technology such as geo-fencing that limits speeds and where the scooters can be parked.”

Cr Turley said communities differed from area to area.

“So it will be critical for each council to have the capacity to reflect the needs and wishes of their communities.”

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2 thoughts on “Councils cautious about e-scooter trial

  1. The opposition & hesitancy to energy-saving, modern last-mile vehicles harks back to the late 1800’s when new-fangled ‘horseless carriages’ were restricted by speed limits of 2 mph through towns and required a vehicle to be preceded by a person waving a red flag.

    I do wonder whether individuals who are overly-cautious about or hindering regulation have ever actually ridden an electric scooter or been in a position where one would be of use.

    I believe there needs to be a greater focus surrounding regulation of private ownership of last-mile vehicles – this would eliminate the need for collection & charging of scooters and also reduce the likelihood of them being abandoned or left in an area where others may vandalise or dump them.

    People are generally more responsible with, and take better care of the things they own.

  2. Whilst on the surface these things look to be an attractive proposition, my comments address private use. Hire scooters have to be paid for and are therefor somewhat traceable.
    The private version scooters are already being sold in NSW for around $500 and are to be seen being illegally ridden on the roads and footpaths here in Port Macquarie.
    One I noticed was obviously modified as it’s speed on the road was in the vicinity of 60 klm/ hr, adult male rider. Kids riding them in the CBD on the footpaths and in the dark sometimes. The only lights being a little red one on the rear. Did I mention they are practically silent. There is a reason kids can’t drive alone until the age of 17.
    During the initial illegal e bike explosion years ago a problem that emerged was their use by disqualified or chemically/alcohol impaired riders.
    Funny enough the first conviction in NSW for riding an illegal e bike was in Nyngan local court by Magistrate Ron Maiden I believe. The lady concerned was not impaired. The following failed appeal led to the definitive banning of particular electric conveyance types by precedent.
    Good luck controlling this.????
    Cheers Pete from Port

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