Thursday, June 20, 2024

NSW Govt-backed e-scooter trials ready to roll

Four popular Western Sydney locations will soon be rolling out e-scooter trials as part of a NSW government-backed shared trial program.

The first shared trials will begin on Saturday at three locations in Western Sydney Parklands’ Bungarribee Park, Lizard Log and Shale Hills, as well as The Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan.

Minister for Active Transport Rob Stokes said the trial parameters had been carefully considered, taking lessons from e-scooter use around the world and across the country to ensure the safest, most practical and effective measures are in place.

He said the Government was committed to cautiously trialling the use of e-scooters in safe environments.

“Like any new technology, e-scooters present us with enormous opportunities and several challenges to address before we can permanently permit them on our streets,” Mr Stokes said. 

“This is why the NSW Government is committed to trialling them and why our parklands are the perfect location to start ahead of trials across multiple council areas.

“Councils can now formally apply to hold a 12-month trial with selected e-scooter shared scheme providers in their area. The trial is restricted to shared scheme e-scooters, so we can guarantee the safety parameters of each device.”

Council areas can now apply to be part of the trial and once approved can begin 12-month trials with e-scooter shared scheme providers in their area.

The trial will limit shared scheme e-scooters to riders 16 years old and over, limited to a maximum of 20km/h on bicycle paths, or roads with a speed limit up to 50 km/h, and a speed limit of 10km/h for shared paths.

E-scooters will not be permitted on footpaths and the use of privately owned e-scooters will remain prohibited as part of the trials.

“We’ve taken our time to get this trial right, which is why we’re not rushing into rolling this trial out to interested council areas immediately,” Mr Stokes said. 

“Each shortlisted council will have to meet the requirements of the trial and undergo a safety assessment before being approved.”

Visitors to Western Sydney Parklands and The Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan will be able to hire an e-scooter through the provider’s app. The app will provide visitors with a map that shows where the scooters are located to pick up and ride.

Applications to be part of the e-scooter shared scheme trial are open until September 30 this year. Learn more about the NSW E-scooter Shared Scheme Trial.

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