Conservative member of parliament Rachel Maclean has praised the UK e-scooter trials, describing the data collected so far as “fantastic”.
Currently serving as a parliamentary under secretary of state in the Department for Transport, Maclean’s local constituency of Redditch is one of the many UK towns and cities taking part in the trials.
The trials are being used as a means of informing the government’s legislative and regulatory plans for the micromobility sector going forward, with the trials set to end on 31 March 2022.
Writing in the Redditch Standard this week, Maclean said that she was proud of her local area for taking part in the trials.
“I’ve seen lots of coverage about e-scooters recently, and whilst there is a minority opposed to this new form of active travel, I’m still proud Redditch is one of the e-scooter trial areas in the country,” she said.
“We’re trialling e-scooters to see what impact they have on other road users, pedestrians, and those with disabilities and mobility issues, and this will be a vital part of our decision whether to legalise them or not.”
According to Zag’s data, there are currently 127 Bird e-scooters available for hire on the streets of Redditch, with the scheme having been rolled out on 1 October 2020.
Around eight months in Maclean has been encouraged by the findings, noting that almost 18,000 journeys have taken place in that time.
“So far, the data from the Redditch e-scooter trial is fantastic,” she added.
“Over 50,000km have been covered by riders since the trial began. Over 17,540 rides have also taken place, with an average of 2.9km being covered.
“Redditch was the first UK town to appoint Bird as their supplier. If you visit their website you’ll see Redditch is featured on the same list as San Francisco, Miami, Tel Aviv and Madrid – I think that’s pretty cool.
“I have received a very small number of complaints about the e-scooter trial. But to put this in perspective there are more than 85,000 people in our town, and I’ve received less than 10 emails complaining about the trial. I take their concerns very seriously and I always raise their complaints with Bird.
“Bird has issued bans for riders in the Redditch area for bad parking and where they have found riders under-age. Bird also operates a warning system. In all, it has only been necessary to issue punishments for 33 riders in total.
“Once the trial has finished, the Government will evaluate the data and decide about the future their use. Until then, I hope local residents will continue to use the e-scooters safely.”