Malaga has decided to make helmets compulsory when riding a scooter, Source: Depositphotos

Malaga makes e-scooter riders wear helmets

Malaga makes e-scooter riders wear helmets

As a trade-off, the maximum permissible speed on the city’s streets for these vehicles remains fairly high

The shared soft mobility landscape in European cities is in a constant state of flux with the proliferation of e-scooters invariably being followed by new regulations and restrictions, or even an outright ban of their use in a bid to curb the number of incidents and injuries.

In that context, the latest development comes from Malaga where at the end of December, the local city council adopted a new regulation which mandates the use of helmets for all people riding e-scooters on the local streets. This goes both for trips on shared e-scooters as well as for private ones.

The City argues that this was necessitated in a bid to do something about the increased number of accidents involving scooters.

Scooter operators are unhappy with this, though

Scooter rental companies, however, are quite outraged about the new rules - so much so that they have threatened to leave Malaga if the regulation is promulgated.

The shared mobility operators claimed there is a comparative disadvantage: "The accident rate on electric scooters is not higher than on bicycles, and helmets are not compulsory on bicycles, so this means of transport is discriminated against," says an official statement quoted in Sur in English. 

They claim that the Spanish traffic code only recommends but does not oblige the use of helmets. In their view, the new measures thus constitute unfair discrimination in the market.

A spokesperson for the lobby of the scooter operators said that if helmets were made compulsory, it would only be viable if a single rental company took over the concession, adding that some operators are already losing money and the extra cost of the problem with helmet thefts would be "the straw that breaks the camel's back".



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