Coventry City Council has applied the brakes to its trial of e-scooters after less than a week – as a result of safety concerns arising from people riding them on pavements.
Launched on 10 September, the West Midlands trial initially includes Coventry and Birmingham, with plans to expand over the coming months.
Coventry City Council says the e-scooters have proved to be extremely popular, with around 5,000 rides taken in the first few days of operation.
However, it has reported incidents where e-scooters have been used in pedestrianised areas where they are not permitted to be.
As a result, on 14 September, the council took the decision to pause the scheme in order to review the first few days of the trial and identify ways in which it can re-commence in an appropriate manner.
A Council spokesperson said: “The trial has been introduced to identify the safest way that e-scooters can be used going forward so it’s right to pause the scheme if concerns are being raised.
“The initial take-up has been encouraging but we need to ensure that the safety of all people using the city centre is protected and that the e-scooters are used in the proper way, henceour decision to pause the pilot until systems are improved.”
The scheme will be delivered by Voi, the company which launched Europe’s first dockless e-scooter service in 2018.
Voi says it looks forward to resuming the service with enhanced safety measures in place.
A spokesperson for Voi said “While we regret the pause to our service, we reiterate our desire and willingness to work with all local stakeholders to deliver a safe and successful trial that meets the council’s objectives and confirms micro mobility as a sustainable, safe and attractive mode for Coventry’s citizens.
“We look forward to resuming the service with enhanced measures in place to address the early observations from the trial.”
The e-scooter trial is still operating in Birmingham.