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A man riding a Lime scooter past the NGV.
Photograph: Supplied

Here's everything we've learned from Melbourne's polarising e-scooter trials

Including how many rides, crashes and fines Melburnians have been involved in

Adena Maier
Written by
Adena Maier

Nowadays, it's nearly impossible to navigate the city without dodging a few Melburnians zipping past on an orange or green scooter. For some, it's a fun and convenient new way to get around; for others, the scooters are a nuisance or even a danger. February 1 will mark one year since a handful of Victorian councils, including Melbourne CBD, Yarra, Port Phillip and Ballarat, joined forces for an e-scooter trial with Lime and Neuron – here's what we've learned in that time. 

According to the RACV, in the first 17 weeks of the trial, Melburnians embarked on more than one million journeys. Within the entire 12-month period, that number soared to a whopping 2.8 million, according to the ABC. It hasn't been all rainbows and sunshine, though; Melburnians have been a bit lax when it comes to e-scooter safety, and Victoria Police has recorded 865 fines, 33 crashes and 15 impoundments. Riding dangerously comes at a cost, with a fine of $143 for carrying more than one person, $219 for not wearing a helmet and $294 for riding on the footpath. 

At this stage, it's illegal to ride e-scooters unless it's part of the trial or you're on private property. While many Victorians have voiced their frustration with this rule, it's mostly due to the large discrepancy in power output and speed capacity across the e-scooter industry. Some e-scooters are able to reach speeds of up to 160 kilometres per hour, while the Lime and Neuron scooters in this trial are low-emission and can only travel up to 20 kilometres per hour. 

While the trial was initially meant to conclude in February, the Victorian government has announced plans to extend it through to March to collect additional data. 

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