E-Scooters set springtime return to Oshawa

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Published March 28, 2024 at 3:08 pm

Photo: Neuron Mobility

Oshawa’s electric scooter pilot project is set to make a springtime return to the city.

The city kicked off its e-scooter program last April allowing residents to share a fleet of micro-vehicles. Riders scan the scooters through a smartphone app which charges the rider for the time using the scooter.

There are numerous rules associated with the scooters;

  • Riders must be 16 or older
  • Helmets are mandatory for riders under 18 years old and encouraged for all riders.
  • Travel should be at a safe speed based on the condition of the trail;
  • The maximum speed limit is 20 km/hr.
  • Caution must be exercised around pedestrians.
  • Riders must dismount when crossing streets and in underpasses.
  • Riders must give a warning before passing by using a bell or through verbal indication.
  • Riders must park in a secure, upright position in a designated cycling or e-scooter parking location.

The scooters are not permitted on sidewalks and will lose power if the on-board GPS detects they’ve left the roadway. They will also power down if they enter many parking areas.

The scooters proved very popular with contractor Neuron reporting 100,000 kilometre worth of rides around the city within the first 11 weeks.

However, the city also saw tragedy during that time when Kaitlyn Pollack, 20, was run over by a pick-up truck at a gas station on the corner of Harmony and Taunton Roads. After a months long investigation, the truck driver was charged with failure to yield.

The pilot was controversial to begin with but Pollack’s death sparked numerous new calls to end the project early. Councillor Rosemary McConkey put forward a motion to suspend the program. However, it was defeated 8-2.

The scooters stayed out until they were put away for the winter and are set to return to the city in the coming days. The pilot will run until December 2024 at which time council will decide to keep

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