Germany’s upper house of parliament is due to vote on Friday may 17th on whether to allow electric scooters on to the country’s roads, following a feverish debate spanning everything from road safety to air quality.
The transport minister is behind the plan, but he has faced a barrage of protests from lobby groups, representing both car drivers and bike riders, who have warned of chaos and accidents if the so-called e-scooters – known locally as e-rollers – are allowed.
Germany is lagging behind most other European countries. E-scooters areavailable for rent in around 20 cities in 10 countries and have proved hugely popular. Those in Germany who argued they would be hazardous in snowy conditions or on cobbled streets have been largely proved wrong in trials taking place across the country.
Germany’s cyclist association, the ADFC, has warned that Germany’s cycle lanes are not sufficient to cope with existing cycle traffic, let alone a new form of transport. “If we end up with a wave of e-scooters rumbling through our inner cities, we will experience some very unpleasant scenes,” the ADFC’s chief executive, Burkhard Stork, warned this week.
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