Friday, April 26, 2024

Victorian Govt extends e-scooter trial

The Victorian Government has today announced a six-month extension of the state’s current e-scooter trial to investigate additional safety and compliance measures ahead of introducing permanent regulatory settings later this year.

The Government says Victorians, especially shift workers, have embraced e-scooters as another mode of transport for getting home, with more than eight million trips recorded during a closely monitored trial.

Data gathered during the trial period shows most e-scooter users are doing the right thing, however it also indicates that more time is needed to improve compliance and make e scooters safer, and support riders to understand the rules.

The Government is investigating extra measures to ensure e-scooter riders and other road users are fully aware of and comply with the rules for e-scooter use. During this time, the current settings will continue.

To assist with this, a refreshed education campaign is being developed for roll out across trial areas, focusing on safe rider behaviour, helmet use and e-scooter parking.

The key campaign stresses that riders must not ride on footpaths, always wear a helmet, be at least 16 years old, not carry a passenger and not drink and ride. E-scooters must also not travel at more than 20km/h and only be ridden on roads with a maximum speed limit of 60km/h or less.

User surveys conducted by share scheme operators revealed that around 28% of e scooter trips in metropolitan areas and up to 40% of trips in Ballarat replaced a vehicle trip (private car or rideshare vehicle) on the riders’ most recent e-scooter ride, helping to alleviate traffic congestion and reduce emissions.

Share hire e-scooters are only legal in councils that have an agreement with an operator.

The Government says it will continue to help councils who choose to introduce share hire schemes by developing a guide with best practice advice on how to manage e-scooter share schemes, including parking management and operator insurance requirements.

“E-scooters are here to stay – they’ve proven popular among commuters, especially shift workers, providing an additional option to travel home safely,” said Minister for Public and Active Transport, Gabrielle Williams.

“We have more work to do on safety and compliance to ensure that e-scooters are safe when they’re made permanent later this year.”

The current settings will now end on October 4.

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