USING a mobile, being under the influence of alcohol and speeding, are just some of the infractions which could land electric scooter users a hefty fine.
From today, Monday, police in Valencia have begun stopping users and pulling them up for misdemeanours while scooting around the city. For the first seven days, it will mainly be on a cautionary basis but from next week the fines begin and will range between 60 and 1,000 euros.
Police are already able to fine users, but the difference now is that they’ll be catching speeders using the technology of drones and radar to measure speeds. As well as speeding there’ll be checks on alcohol and drug use as the number of accidents involving scooters is on the rise, according to Councillor for Civil Protection Aarón Cano.
Cano has stressed that the campaign aims to transmit to all scooter users that they must comply with the same rules which apply to other road users, like cars and motorbikes.
He said: “We want to inform people about the regulations that have not yet got through to many scooter drivers who have felt a kind of liberty in the sense that, as it is a new form of transport, they are outside the regulatory framework. That is not true because it affects them in exactly the same way”. He added that police officers have discovered that many scooter users do not have a driving license, “which means that there is a great lack of knowledge about basic traffic rules.”
He said the intention of the campaign is to set in order road safety in the city of Valencia, focusing on new means of transport. “In 2017 there were hardly any scooters in the city, but in 2021 the scooter is now a regular, normal, everyday sight on our streets. We have to adapt and put the necessary measures in place to avoid there being a road conflict in the city as a consequence of these new forms of transport”, he said.
In fact, according to Cano, the number of accidents involving scooters has not stopped growing since their erruption into the city of Valencia. “We make decisions based on scientific criteria that show that the number of accidents involving scooters is growing day by day and what we want is to remedy it,” he declared.
So far this year, there have been approximately 470 accidents involving scooters, which means that at this point in the year more accidents have been registered than in all of 2020. “The growth in accidents is increasing exponentially year after year,” he said.
He added that until now most infractions reported by local police regarding scooters, have been for not wearing helmets, using headphones while scooting or breaking traffic rules. Now to these users need to add penalties for speeding.