Recall Lime e-scooters, argues Dunedin writer

A petition calling for Lime e-scooters to be recalled - like any other defective product is being taken to Wellington by Dunedin writer Dr Lynley Hood.

Dr Hood is the co-convener of the Dunedin Pedestrian Action Network and a trustee of the Visual Impairment Charitable Trust Aotearoa (Victa).

Speaking during the public forum at the start of today's Dunedin City Council infrastructure services and networks committee meeting, Dr Hood questioned whether the council had been "conned by a snake-oil salesman" into allowing e-scooters on city streets.

They were permitted to operate on footpaths, despite concerns about their "frightening speed" and the potential for faulty brakes, suspension and other inadequate safety features, she said.

Lynley Hood. Photo: ODT
Lynley Hood. Photo: ODT

In the United States, Lime was rolling out a new models with improved features, but not in New Zealand, where people were being used as "crash-test dummies", she said.

The city needed to ensure its footpaths were safe spaces for all, meaning e-scooters needed to be forced off footpaths, on to cycleways, and their riders encouraged to operate them with courtesy and respect.

But the city also needed more time to plan for their future use, Dr Hood believed.

To achieve this, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) could initiate a compulsory product recall - on the basis the devices could cause injury to people _ to remove them until issues were resolved.

She was circulating a petition calling on Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Chris Faafoi to do just that, and urged councillors to sign it.

Her move came after a spike in minor and more serious injuries followed the introduction of Lime scooters in Dunedin and other centres.

That included 26-year-old Californian woman Renee Whitehouse, who received serious head injuries after being struck by a truck while riding a scooter home from work at an Octagon bar at 1.45am.

She was not wearing a helmet and was believed to have run a red light before the accident.

Comments

I understand she has concerns, and there have been some idiots using them improperly, but should 1 person's voice be louder than those who are actively using them? Over 75 thousand trips have been taken in Dunedin since they were introduced. People are voicing their opinions through their wallets. Education over regulation, please.

Wallet opinion is no way to manage safety for the visually impaired. A fine thing if we assessed municipal need according to how much money people spend on private services.

I want to sign the petition too. Is it available online?

"They were permitted to operate on footpaths, despite concerns about their "frightening speed" and the potential for faulty brakes, suspension and other inadequate safety features, she said"
Motor vehicles are also permitted to operate on streets despite their "frightening speed" they also have 'potential' for inadequate safety features, does she want them recalled as well?, fairs fair.
"their riders encouraged to operate them with courtesy and respect" would like ALL road users to operate like that, not just scooter riders.
"where people were being used as "crash-test dummies", provide proof this is happening until you do you are scaremongering.
"That included 26-year-old Californian woman Renee Whitehouse, who received serious head injuries after being struck by a truck while riding a scooter home from work at an Octagon bar at 1.45am.
She was not wearing a helmet and was believed to have run a red light before the accident", so the scooter was at fault here was it, the scooter caused the young lady to run the red light?.....I think not.

Hello Lynley! Earth to all those who want to stop stuff, while the scooters are a pest, I am going to keep away from them until the fad ends. As for CARS, Lynley you will be happy to use yours come a trip to carry weighty groceries from the supermarket or to pick up small children, to get building materials or to go on a short trip to Balclutha perhaps, for the day. I will always drive my car. I will use it because until recently Dunedin was a free city and will return to freedom after this mayor and council go after being replaced with one that is not in concert with the university and the commercial leaders to the detriment of the freedom of the citizens who pay their wages!