Friday, March 1, 2024

Tasmanian councils steer e-scooters’ future

The City of Launceston Council and City of Hobart Council are set to consider final reports into a trial of e-scooters in their respective cities.

Rental electric scooters were introduced in the two cities last December, following regulatory changes by the Tasmanian Government which allow both private and rental e-scooters to be used on most local roads, footpaths and cycling trails across the State.

Both Councils have worked with the State Government and private operators Beam and Neuron on the trial.

The Councils say the trial has not sought to determine whether e-scooters should or should not be allowed to operate in Tasmania; rather it has provided a formal mechanism for the Councils to play an advocacy role in managing the introduction of e-scooters to their cities, to better understand how e-scooters have been used, and to identify opportunities for future improvement.

In Launceston, data on rental e-Scooters was collected between December 18, 2021, and
December 17, 2022, with the cooperation of commercial operators, Beam and Neuron.

The City of Launceston’s report has considered feedback on rental e-Scooters from the community, riders, community groups and other relevant stakeholders.

It has analysed rental e-Scooter usage, parking, and safety considerations, and contains a suite of recommendations for future commercial e-Scooter operations in the Launceston municipality.

The recommendations include:
● Determining clearer delineation of roles and responsibilities between Councils, the State
Government, commercial operators, Tasmania Police and other stakeholders;
● Introducing permit conditions which require commercial operators to deliver safety campaigns and include consistent reporting requirements;
● Designating dedicated e-Scooter parking spaces in high-activity areas;
● Introducing signage changes;
● Continuing advocacy to the State Government for legislative alignment and consistency,
including reporting metrics.

The City of Launceston is expected to consider its e-Scooter Trial Evaluation at its meeting on 23 February.

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