SINGAPORE: Government adds on new restrictions to the current electric scooter ban after accepting all recommendations put forward by a panel studying the use of the device on Wednesday (Dec 4).
There is no commencement date yet for the implementation of the regulations, which includes a minimum age of 16 for e-scooter users to ride on cycling paths. Those under the age of 16 will have to be supervised by adults.
The newly introduced regulation states that e-scooter users will also have to pass theory test – a new requirement which will be extended to electric bicycle users before they are allowed to ride on cycling paths and roads.
The restrictions come after e-scooters were banned from Singapore’s footpaths on Nov 5, with offenders facing fines of up to S$2,000 and jail time of up to three months once the ban is strictly enforced from 2020.
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Due to an increase in the number of accidents involving e-scooters, including a fatal collision involving an elderly cyclist back in September, this ban was put forth to eliminate such accidents.
The latest regulation will see that food delivery companies and other businesses which utilises e-scooter riders will be required to obtain third-party liability insurance for them. An effort taken to prepare for a move towards mandatory insurance for all e-scooter users, the Ministry of Transport said.
On top of that, the usage of mobile phones while riding on both cycling paths and roads will be barred for all active mobility users. Acceptable alternatives to this rule would be if the phones are mounted or “used in a hands-free manner”.
The current code of conduct which draws focus to device users will be expanded to include guidelines to encourage pedestrians to keep left, keep to footpaths, and for all path users to be wary of their surroundings.
The Active Mobility Advisory Panel’s recommendations which were submitted to Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan in September, were the latest in a series of measures proposed to better the safety for public path users in Singapore.
On Wednesday, the transport ministry said that the panel’s latest recommendations were timely and will complement existing efforts to improve path and road safety.