Reports of people following the vans that are distributing e-scooters around the city
After a slight delay after the operator decided to wait a couple of days for snow and ice to thaw, the UK’s latest e-scooter trial is now underway in Newcastle. The first 250 Neuron scooters have been used a combined 1,000 times a day since their launch on Tuesday February 16.
Trials of rented scooters covered by a motor vehicle insurance policy have been taking place in a number of towns and cities around the UK since the government lifted a ban in July 2020.
There are now calls for privately-owned e-scooters to be made road legal as well.
Chronicle Live reports that Neuron’s scooters have proven sufficiently popular in Newcastle that there have even been reports of people following the vans that are distributing them around the city.
The firm hopes to have a total of 1,050 scooters in the city by the end of the year-long trial and has now announced that it will also be launching in Sunderland.
It costs £1 to unlock a Neuron e-scooter and 18p per minute after that. There are also discount passes, plus free passes for NHS and emergency services staff during lockdown.
Features include a helmet attached to every e-scooter, which is unlocked through the app; topple detection; geofencing to control where the scooter can and can’t be ridden and parked; and voice guidance.
"The scooter will talk to you if you are heading towards a no-go zone and advise you to turn back,” said city operations manager, Teddy Howard. “If you don't turn back it will just stop."
The Sunderland trial will see 300 e-scooters deployed over the 12-month period with the first 100 becoming available from late March.