Hundreds sign petition to ban e-scooters from footpaths

A petition is going to Parliament today to try and get e-scooters off footpaths.

Eighteen-hundred people are backing the campaign which was launched by 13 groups, including elderly and disabled communities.

Living Streets president Andy Smith says they should never have been allowed in the first place.

"Because it's got small wheels, it's gone under the legislation for children's bicycles. It's a nonsense that they should be there."

Smith fears allowing e-scooters could set a precedent for future technology.

"Whatever next? Amazon delivery vehicles? Ovens that run around on four wheels, delivering pizzas?"

In August, Auckland DHB estimated it cost about $20,000 to treat each patient who needed surgery after being injured on an e-scooter. And research published in October suggested the costs of treating patients was 35 times higher than the licencing costs the operators paid.

Operator Lime recently lost its licence to operate in the city after numerous incidents, including brakes locking up at random. But four others still have permission - Jump, Neuron, Beam and Flamingo. 

Smith says one wrong move is all it takes.

"If somebody loses their balance, brakes [don't work], it could be a death sentence for someone that's 80 or 90."

The petition will be presented to New Zealand First MP Tracey Martin, the Minister for Children and Seniors, at 1pm.


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