Electric scooters have become a popular mode of micro-mobility over the past years, but, at the same time the number of e-scooter users has increased, so has the number of road accidents they are involved in.
Last year, Brussels introduced stricter regulation for e-scooter users, to ensure their safety as well as the safety of those around them. However, a spokesperson for the regional transport agency, Brussels Mobility, told VRT News the rules are still not being followed. “People still ride e-scooters in twos and youngsters under the age of 16 still use the scooters”, Inge Paemen said.
We see that the number of accidents involving e-scooters has increased sharply and every accident is one too many.Inge Paemen, spokesperson Brussels Mobility
According to statistics from Vias, the Belgian road safety institute, in 2020, there were around 400 accidents involving an e-scooter in the Brussels capital region, resulting in two deaths. By 2021, the number of accidents increased to 1,000. Statistics also show that in 2021 children under 16 were related to 1 in 7 accidents involving an e-scooter, from which 130 people were injured. By spring 2022, the number of injury-causing accidents tripled, according to Belga news agency.
“We want to bring attention to the rules by means of a quiz”, Paemen revealed. On the campaign page on Brussels Mobility’s website, as well as on their mobile app, people will be able to access a quiz with questions about the rules that e-scooter users need to follow to ensure their safety and that of those around them. The agency will offer free ride minutes with a shared e-scooter provider to those who manage to answer all of the questions correctly.
When used correctly, scooters are a very practical alternative for getting around town. Good use means safely, in the right place and respecting other road users and traffic rules.Elke Van den Brandt, Brussels’ Mobility Minister
Besides the quiz, Brussels Mobility is collaborating with social media influencers to promote the safe usage rules, as well as sending agents to the busiest areas to talk to e-scooter users in person about their responsibility to ensure road safety.
For the duration of the campaign, police officers will also be paying more attention to e-scooter users, so those who are not convinced by the campaign would maybe become more aware of the rules after a fine. Riding on the pavement or with a passenger is finable by €68, while the cost for more serious offences, like running a red light, is €184.