Bristol councillors call for end to e-scooter trial ‘chaos’

A woman riding a Voi e-scooter. Credit: WECA

Opposition councillors at Bristol City Council are calling for an end to the city’s e-scooter trial scheme, citing safety concerns.

The Conservative group say there will be “chaos” on the roads if the Voi rental scheme is made permanent, and private electric scooters are permitted as well.

Bristol’s Labour mayor Marvin Rees wants to extend the trial to March next year, calling it an “overwhelming success”.

Voi e-scooters were introduced in Bristol in October 2020. Credit: PA

He also said he expects e-scooters to become a “permanent feature” of the city’s transport network and for private scooters to be legalised.

‘Serious problems’

But Tory councillor Lesley Alexander believes there are “serious problems” with the e-scooters, which were first introduced in the city in October 2020.

In a motion tabled ahead of a full council meeting on September 7, she said: "[Bristol City] Council is conscious of increasing complaints around road and pedestrian safety, an apparent lack of policing or enforcement, silent scooters being ridden on pavements to create new hazards and nuisance as well as clutter where motors are simply discarded in a haphazard fashion.

Cllr Alexander's motion, which is unlikely to be debated, calls on Mr Rees not to extend the trial beyond its planned finish at the end of October.

It also asks that all elected members be given an opportunity to vote on whether to make the scheme permanent.

And it calls on the mayor to oppose any moves by the Government to make it legal for private e-scooters to be used in public spaces such as roads and pavements.