Singapore: scooters banned on sidewalks under penalty of imprisonment
In response to an increase in the number of serious accidents, authorities in the Asian city state announced on 4 November that the use of scooters on sidewalks would now be banned. What's more, prison sentences could even be imposed for offenders as early as next year.
In Singapore, scooters are already banned from roads. Now, they are also banned from the sidewalks. The measure, announced by the authorities on November 4, comes after many incidents involving the two-wheeled vehicles in the last few months: there have been accidents, fires at charging stations and even the death of a cyclist. Electric scooters are far from welcome amongst the local residents who have long been pushing for better supervision of their use.
Scooter-sceptics can now rejoice as use of these electric scooters will now be restricted to only parks and bicycle paths. For users caught on a sidewalk, they will first be issued a warning. However, in January, the regulations will tighten and offenders will face harsher sentences of up to two months in prison and a fine of S$2000 (about £1134).
"This measure is necessary to ensure pedestrian safety after a growing number of accidents involving careless scooter drivers and despite increased controls and educational efforts," said the Singapore Transport Authority in a statement.
In recent months, Singapore authorities have already imposed the need to register these vehicles and enforced speed limits, but to little effect.
In France, the use of electric scooters on sidewalks is prohibited. Drivers may only use bicycle paths and roads limited to 50 kilometers per hour or less. Last September, In response to the increase in scooter-related fatal accidents, the French government adopted new regulations, including a speed limit of 25 kilometers per hour.