Saturday, May 25, 2024

Victorian e-scooter trial extended

The Victorian Government has announced a six-month extension of the current e-scooter trial to include the entire state.

Minister for Road and Road Safety, Melissa Horne said the trial would continue under strict safety conditions and include the use of private e-scooters.

“We know e-scooters are popular with many Victorians – so we’re extending the trial in Victoria under these strict regulations to ensure people travel responsibly and safely.”

“Riders should always wear a helmet, stick to the speed limit, only ride on roads under 60km/h – and never ride on the footpath or with another person,” said Minister Horne.

She said e-scooter share schemes will operate with the approval of local councils – with the schemes in Ballarat, Yarra, Port Philip and Melbourne expected to continue during the trial extension.

More than 3.7 million short trips have been taken on e-scooters in Melbourne, alongside more than 200,000 in Ballarat, throughout the trial.

Data from the trial showed the main reason people hire a trial e-scooter is for leisure, social outings, commuting or to visit cafes, reducing congestion and carbon emissions – with around 400 tonnes of carbon avoided through e-scooter use.

During the trial extension, the following rules will be in place:

• Riders must wear a helmet, be at least 16 years of age and adhere to the same blood alcohol content (BAC) and drug use restrictions as drivers. Riders cannot consume alcohol while travelling on an e-scooter;
• E-scooters can only be used on roads with a speed limit of 60 kilometres or less. They can be ridden on roads, in bicycle lanes, on bicycle paths or separated and shared paths – but not on footpaths;
• E-scooters cannot travel above 20 kilometres per hour;
• Devices capable of exceeding 25 kilometres per hour are not classified as e-scooters and are still illegal.

The Minister said further work will be carried out throughout the trial extension to understand product safety standards, rider education and if any changes to penalties.

The trial extension will come into effect on 5 April.

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