It was the story the media have been fighting for, jostling for pole position on the capital’s cycle lanes: electric scooters are dangerous.
In early August a Capital Region release reported by Berlingske confirmed there have been 100 “scooter-related injuries” this year.
Based on hospital visits, most of the injuries were suffered to the face and head and a third were alcohol-related. Only a few pedestrians were injured – mostly by tripping over them on the pavement.
Concerns have been voiced that it is hard for scooter-riders to observe cycling rules, such as signalling to turn or stop because it is dangerous to drive with only one hand on the handle.
Karina Vestergård Madsen, an Enhedslisten councillor at Copenhagen Municipality, has recommended a 6 km/h speed limit in built-up areas and for alco-locks – a device that users must blow into to activate the scooter – to be fitted.
Not like cycling
Some 53 riders were charged with driving whilst intoxicated over the three weekends from July 6-21 – landing themselves a 2,000 kroner fine. A third offence can earn you a spell in prison.
The rules, however, are not the same for cyclists. Cyclists are stopped by the police if they are deemed to be drunk, but usually not punished.
Some 13 companies have been permitted to lease 3,200 electric scooters and 3,200 electric bicycles in Copenhagen over the remainder of the one-year trial period, reports minby.dk. In total, there were applications to lease approximately 20,000 scooters and bikes.
Copenhagen Municipality has indicated it will wait until the end of the trial period before deciding on their future. Heavy restrictions have been outlined in the city centre along with strict parking regulations.
Finally, in what sounds like something out of a James Bond movie, a 70-year-old woman was killed by an electric scooter at Odense’s main railway station on June 28 when a man drove one down a metallic ramp dividing two escalators and hit her from behind.