Electric scooter accident reminder that usage under influence prohibited

Bolt scooters for rent in Tallinn.
Bolt scooters for rent in Tallinn. Source: Bolt

The use of electric scooters while under the influence of alcohol is prohibited, it has been highlighted, following a recent accident in Tallinn in which a user was injured.

Electric scooter rental services were only introduced last month in the Estonian capital, with two companies, Citybee, and taxi-hailing app provider Bolt, rolling out their models to the public.

The scooters have fast become a common sight on the streets of central Tallinn.

However, on Wednesday, a 24-year-old man fell off a scooter while attempting to avoid hitting a pedestrian, injuring himself.

The incident happened in Juhkentali Street, BNS reports, and the man was taken to nearby Ida-Tallinn Central Hospital.

The man was reportedly under the influence of alcohol when he came to grief. The whereabouts and well-being of the pedestrian involved have not been reported; the Police and Border Guard Board (PPA) has urged any witnesses to the incident, which happened just before 1.30 p.m. in the vicinity of Juhkentali Street 18 on Wednesday, to contact them via the hotline on 612 3000, or by email.

"Everyone using a scooter is responsible for both their own safety as well as that of other road users," said Bolt spokesperson Karin Kase, following the incident.

"Just as with a bicycle, riding a scooter while drunk is prohibited," she continued, noting that so far as Bolt is aware, the accident is the first of its kind involving one of its rented scooters.

Bolt scooters can be picked up by scanning a QR code onto the scooter itself. Users must have downloaded the Bolt app to their phone in advance, and a quick tutorial on how to use the scooters is displayed via the app, for first time riders. Unlocking a scooter costs €0.50, with the rental fee being €0.10 per minute. An all-day maximum fee of €15 is available too. Over 100 were made available when the service launched.

Citybee scooters can be picked up at any of 10 hubs in central Tallinn, including Tammsaare Park and Freedom Square, with rental points available temporarily at Kalev Stadium and the Song Festival Grounds, while the Song and Dance Festival is in progress. Citybee's basic pricing is identical to Bolt's, and can be used to a maximum range of 25 km per trip, it is reported.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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