UK trials of rental e-scooters scaled back amid concerns

Many UK cities are looking to ditch rental e-scooters after widespread dangerous misuse


IN news that will likely not surprise you, many UK cities are looking to scale back the recent trials of rental e-scooters amid concerns that riders are using the machine in a dangerous manner and riding them in prohibited areas. 

The government-backed scheme was supposed to help Britain to get moving again after the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing people to shun traditional forms of public transport in favour of a more socially distanced method of getting around.

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It was hope that up to 10,000 of the electrically powered scooters would be on the UK’s roads by summer 2021, and that the uptake of use could also help reduce the UK’s carbon output.

The reality though is that machines have been hired by riders who are underage, improperly trained, and taking them into areas of the city where they are prohibited from riding.

The second pilot scheme took place in Hartlepool, County Durham, where it’s reported two teenagers took a pair of e-scooter that they had rented down a 70mph stretch of the A19. For reference, the scooters have a top speed of between 12 and 15mph.

The latest city to ditch the two-wheeled machines is Coventry, which had begun trialling the scooters less than a week ago. The council pulled the plug on the scheme after just six days. This time there were reports of rental scooters being ridden on pavements and in pedestrian-only areas of the city.

Have e-scooters been introduced in your city, or have you had a positive or negative experience of people riding one?