Following the ban in Prague 2, Prague 1 are also calling on City Hall to enforce stricter rules on the electric scooters launched by US start-up Lime. The head of Prague 1 City Council also insisted that if the situation is not improved, the district would call for a ban on the scooters similar to that in Prague 2. Currently, scooters are banned from being left in the territory of the second district.
In response to criticisms, the company have said they would try to instruct clients on the rules of the road and how to drive safely. At the same time, however, the company have ignored the ban in Prague 2 and are still allowing scooters to operate in the district. Operating manager Ondřej Široký stated that the company is currently negotiating with the city districts where the service is available.
However, according to Prague 1’s Blažková, the US start-up did not inform the town hall or the city police about the intended distribution of the electric scooters. She added that the company are already violating the agreement with the city council. The scooters do not meet road traffic standards and the users do not comply with the rules of driving or parking the vehicles.
Prague 1 are therefore insisting that the City Council enforce the terms of agreement, as well as for city police officers to take more control over enforcing the rules of the road, and for the company, like in Prague 2, to ban the disposing of scooters in the territory of the first district.
People can now find hundreds of Lime scooters around the city centre. With a mobile application, anyone can borrow a scooter and leave it anywhere in the city. It costs 25 crowns to borrow a scooter and then an extra 2 crowns for every minute. The maximum speed is about 25 kilometres per hour, and the company takes care of charging each scooter.
The American start-up Lime was established in California in January 2017. It was mainly active in the United States and is now expanding into Europe. Prior to Prague, the company launched its service in cities such as Paris, Vienna, Berlin, and Madrid. In Prague, other services in the shared transportation industry include Rekola Bicycles, Car4way, and Revolt carsharing services.
Author: Holly Webb