E-scooter firm Voi 'liaising with police' after boy, 12, killed in bus crash tragedy

The tragedy took place just before 8am today, December 6, in the Belchers Lane area of Bordesley Green. Credit: BPM Media

E-scooter hire firm Voi has confirmed it is liaising with West Midlands Police after a boy, 12, died in a bus crash tragedy.

It is understood the schoolboy was riding one of the scooters, which are available to hire in the city for over 18s with a provisional licence.

The incident took place just before 8am on December 6, in the Belchers Lane area of Bordesley Green.

The youngster's family has been told and are being supported by specially trained police officers.

A Voi spokesman said: "First and foremost our thoughts are with the deceased’s family and friends. The news of this tragic accident has shocked us deeply."

The firm added: "We’re liaising with West Midlands Police and providing them with all the necessary information and we will be fully supportive of their ongoing investigation.

"Based on the notification we received from the police, we understand that the deceased was involved in an accident on Tuesday 6th December.

"We will not provide any further comment on the details of the incident at this moment in time."

On its website, Voi says it was chosen by West Midlands Combined Authority and Birmingham City Council to run a pilot hire scheme in the city centre from September 2020.

People can find and ride an e-scooter through the Voi app, paying £1 to unlock a scooter and 20p per minute to ride.

While it has attracted safety concerns, the popularity of the scheme has boomed.

Some 32 areas across the country have commissioned trials, including the West Midlands.

There are three trial zones in Birmingham City Centre, Coventry City Centre and West Bromwich City Centre.

Only people who are 18 years old with a full or provisional UK driving license can use the mode of transport.

The 12-year-old died after being involved in a crash with a bus in Bordesley Green in Birmingham Credit: BPM Media

Det Sgt Paul Hughes, of West Midlands Police's serious collision investigation unit, said: "This is an awful tragedy for the young boy's family and friends, and our thoughts are with them at this time.

"We've spoken to a number of witnesses, but still want to hear from any of the passengers on the bus who we've not yet spoken to, or from people who may have captured what happened on dashcam.

"If people do have footage, we'd ask them not to share it on social media but to send it to us so that we can help establish exactly what happened."

On Tuesday, a Birmingham councillor called for an immediate ban on e-scooters following the shocking death.

Shafique Shah, who is also deputy lord mayor, said the tragedy had horrified the local community in his Heartlands ward.

He said: "There is no good reason for continuing to operate the (WMCA) e-scooter scheme locally now. A little boy has lost his life.

"People are in despair. We need a complete ban now."

A Birmingham City Council spokesperson said: "Our thoughts are with the family and friends of the boy at this awful time.

"Police are investigating the circumstances of the collision and have appealed forwitnesses, so we would not be able to comment further while that is on-going."

A Transport for West Midlands spokesperson said: "Our thoughts and sympathies go out to the family and friends of the boy who died so tragically this morning.

"The incident is now the subject of an ongoing police investigation and it is only right and proper we await the findings before commenting further."

Anyone with information about the tragedy has been asked to get in touch with West Midlands Police, quoting log 622 of 6 December.