Wellington gets cold feet on e-scooter trial

Wellington officials have put the brakes on the roll out of e-scooters.

A trial involving two companies was meant to kick off Monday in the capital, but Wellington City Council spokesperson Richard MacLean says it's simply too soon.

"There's just been a bit of a delay with the council being able to do due diligence, and also check the various companies that are interested in being part of an e-scooter trial."

Lime scooters were taken off Auckland and Dunedin streets recently over safety concerns, following dozens of serious injuries. The scooters were braking when they weren't meant to.

The applicants to take part in the Wellington trial are reportedly Lime, Onzo, Blip, Future, Scoot and Flamingo.

The company made changes, and its fleet is back on the streets - but with greater oversight from the authorities. 

Mr MacLean says Wellington is keeping a very close eye on how other councils are handling safety issues. The trial, when it goes ahead, will have a ban on their use on many major streets, RNZ reported, including Cuba Mall.

"Wellington has narrow streets, a lot of pedestrians - there's a potential for bad injuries."

He says the trial could be given the green light in a week or so. Scooters from two companies out of six that have applied will take part.

"The trial will test the demand for e-scooters, how they fit in the context of Wellington, and rider behaviour," Mayor Justin Lester told RNZ in February.