Transport for London approves use of street eScooters

Transport for London approves use of street eScooters

Electric scooters have hit the streets of London; now part of the green transport plan after the capital approved these personal electric vehicles. These eScooters will operate on roads and bicycles lanes, however pavements remain barred. After just recently permitting three firms to operate hire schemes, it’s likely that London will start seeing small-scale operations in select boroughs for now. Transport for London stated that these trials are part of an initiative to encourage eco-friendly transport, reduce emissions and also to protect against a “damaging, car-led recovery from coronavirus”; quoted as road congestion already nears pre-pandemic levels.

Electric scooters london

Limes eScooter rental, a major company hoping for contracts in London

Director of transport innovation Michael Hurwitz stated that “we’re determined to make sure that London recovers from coronavirus safely & sustainably and support innovative solutions that could help.” Whilst rental scooters get the green light, privately owned scooter remain illegal in public. However in recent times, many already see widespread unauthorised use on the streets on London. Transport of London also stated that participating boroughs regulate parking of eScooters to avoid congestion and clutter; potentially enforcing “slow zones” in which speeds are limited to 8 mp/h, instead of the established maximum of 15 mp/h.

London Escooters

Rider stopped regarding riding a privately owned electric scooter on the pavement

TfL planning for a slow & steady start

TfL and surrounding boroughs also stated that they would “start cautiously”. This begins with a limited trial of 60 to 150 scooters in each borough; regarding safety as the top priority. The mayor of Hackney & chairman of London councils’ transport & environment committee believes the year-long trial will determine whether these eScooters are a positive or negative addition to the transport network. Meanwhile, other UK cities already started trials in summer and met mixed results. These results also rely on the responsibility of companies applying to join the trial; which must demonstrate plans to keep streets clear and protect road users, riders and pedestrians.

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