Trial of rental e-scooters begins in London

The boroughs of Ealing and Hammersmith are both taking part in a trial which makes e-scooters available for rent. The trial, which started on Monday 7 June, will enable riders to pay between £3.25 and £3.40 for a 15 minute ride. The trial will last for a year.

Transport for London says the trial is initially launching in Canary Wharf, Ealing, Hammersmith & Fulham, Kensington & Chelsea and Richmond, with Tower Hamlets acting as a ‘ride through’ area.  The trial will begin with this core group of boroughs, with more expected to join throughout the summer.

Scooters are only allowed to be ridden on roads, not pavements.  They can only be parked in specified locations, not obstructing the pavement, and cannot be taken in certain areas, such as tunnels. Each operator will charge a fee to unlock as well as a fee charged per minute for each ride.

The Government recently announced that rental schemes for e-scooters woud be legalised across the country. TfL says the safety standards required in London will go further than those set out at a national level, by requiring:

  • A lower maximum speed of 12.5mph, compared to the 15.5mph set nationally
  • Lights at the front and the rear of the vehicles that are always on throughout any rental
  • Larger wheels at least 12 inches in diameter, meaning they can navigate road surfaces more easily

The operators will also have additional safety mechanisms in place, including ‘first ride policies’, meaning riders must take an e-learning safety course before they hire for the first time, and lower maximum speeds in place for their first ride.

The e-scooter operators working with TfL are Dott, Lime and TIER.

Will Norman, London’s Walking & Cycling Commissioner, said:

“As we look to our capital’s future, we want to ensure a green and sustainable recovery from the pandemic. We know that a huge portion of car journeys in London are for very short distances, and we want to explore how e-scooters can act as an innovative alternative.

“E-scooters have been on our streets for some time now but with very little regulation. This trial will have safety at its heart, bringing in rigorous precautions and parking measures while taking the needs of all road users into account and seeing what role e-scooters can play in London’s future.”

Read more stories on The Chiswick Calendar

See also: Ealing Council’s cost cutting ‘putting women at risk’

See also: Heathrow opens separate Red route arrivals “too late”, says Ruth Cadbury

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