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17 Accidents and drunk scooting incidents: City: No need for action in dealing with e-scooters

17 Accidents and drunk scooting incidents : City: No need for action in dealing with e-scooters

A citizen has requested more effective protection for pedestrians from e-scooters. The city sees no need for action, as the accident figures in Bonn are not conspicuously high.

Following the introduction of rental e-scooters last summer by the public utilities, the citizens' committee will deal with a citizens' motion on 23rd January on road safety. The petitioner is primarily concerned with the question of how to protect pedestrians from the new road users: "I ask that pedestrians in Bonn be effectively protected against the dangers posed by e-scooters and that offences against the traffic regulations applicable to this type of motor vehicle be consistently punished," says the online appeal to the city.

However, the administration sees no concrete need for action. Even if it is not possible to prevent every instance of misconduct in road traffic, the police checks and the information provided to users "can be considered successful so far", the administration explains in its statement. There are no indications that there are "conspicuously frequent accidents with e-scooters in Bonn".

The city points out that e-scooters are part of the flowing road traffic, which only the police may check. "The city as a local regulatory agency lacks a legal authority for this." The police regularly check drivers and punish any infringements consistently. There is a regular exchange between the city and the police. "In particular, it is discussed how users of e-scooters can be taught how to comply with the applicable road traffic regulations.

According to police press spokesman Michael Beyer, since the end of June last year until the deadline on 2 December, e-scooter drivers have either been involved in 17 traffic accidents or been cited for drunken driving. Minor accidents are not recorded by the authorities. In an accident on 31 July without the involvement of others, a young woman was seriously injured in the Rhine floodplain, causing her to be taken to the emergency room. She had apparently lost control of the scooter.

More serious was the collision between an electric scooter driver and a taxi on 13 October 2019 on the Bonn Talweg, in which the scooter driver was seriously injured. The police will present further figures on fines imposed and DUIs, covering the entire year, together with the traffic accident statistics at the end of February.

Beyer emphasized that the police had done a lot of educational work to teach the drivers the correct handling of the scooters. Among other things, the authority issued a flyer. "Not all drivers are aware that the scooter is a motor vehicle", Beyer said. This means that the same blood-alcohol limit applies as for motorists. In Germany it is 0.5 per mille. Those who do not adhere to the alcohol limit and are caught will face heavy fines. For over 1.1 per mille, the driving license is withdrawn.

(Original text: Philipp Königs; Translation: Mareike Graepel)