Since the launch of the Wollongong trial on 26 September, Neuron’s orange e-scooters have been widely embraced. There have been 12,000 trips taken and 28,000 kilometres travelled in just one week!
Wollongong City Council is supporting a 12-month trial. The Neuron e-scooters will be permitted to be hired and ridden by riders 16 years and over on eligible roads and shared paths around the city. The permitted zones are geofenced meaning the e-scooters will not work outside the zones (Image: Wollongong City Council)
46% of Neuron trips are replacing car journeys
Average trips are 2.5 kilometres and take 18 minutes. But the longest ride recorded was a round trip from Diggies to Sandon Point, travelling approximately 27 kilometres. This journey took 1 hour and 50 minutes. According to Neuron’s Australian surveys, 46% of Neuron trips are replacing car journeys. This then helps to reduce congestion, improve air quality and support cities' sustainability goals.
Big boost to local businesses
Flagstaff Hill, Diggies and the entry to Crown Street Mall are the most popular places for riders to start and end their trips. In addition, many riders scoot along the Blue Mile Pathway and into the city centre. Flagstaff Hill to Stuart Park, and Levendi to Keira Street, are also popular routes with many riders visiting the businesses at the corner of Smith and Keira Street.
While many of the coastal e-scooter stations are popular, riders are seen scooting to the University of Wollongong’s Innovation Campus. Additionally, businesses surveyed will add to the data collected during the e-scooter trial.
“Overwhelmingly there’s been positive feedback from riders about the service. Many people are making trips they wouldn’t otherwise have made, and it is great to see e-scooters benefit local businesses and the community as a whole,” says Tim Morris, Neuron Mobility.
“With e-scooters being new in the city there are likely to be many first time riders, who may be less familiar with the riding rules.”
Important e-scooter rules and safety tips:
- E-scooter riders must be 16 years old and above
- E-scooters cannot be ridden on the footpath
- E-scooters can only be ridden on bicycle lanes, shared paths, and low speed roads
- Maximum share path speed of 10km/h
- Only one rider allowed per e-scooter, and no tandem riding with children
- Wearing a helmet is mandatory, there is one on every e-scooter
- Maintain a safe distance between riders and pedestrians
- Give way to pedestrians and mobility devices (such as wheelchairs) at all times
- Do not ride under the influence of alcohol or any other substance
- Park responsibly, don't obstruct access areas
The roll out of e-mobility and separated bike paths is shown to reduce unnecessary car travel in urban environments (Image: Neuron Mobility)
“They are a great way for locals as well as tourists to travel in a safe, convenient and fun way. We are already being told they are reducing short car journeys, and are having a positive impact on the city. We thank the Wollongong City Council and Transport for New South Wales for their continued trust and support,” says Tim Morris of Neuron Mobility
“It’s clear from the first week of use that the e-scooter trial has got off to a promising start,” agrees Wollongong City Lord Mayor Councillor Gordon Bradbery AM
“People have really engaged in the rollout of this new technology … Particularly in our foreshore areas. It has been really good to see and I encourage everyone (riding an e-scooter) to brush up on the rules … And be mindful of others on our roads and shared paths.‘’
Neuron are keen to promote safety through their online ScootSafe Academy and in-person ScootSafe events.
Bicycle NSW CEO Peter McLean tries a Neuron e-scooter at last year’s Western Sydney Parklands e-mobility trial with Beam, Neuron, and Lime. (Image Bicycle NSW)
The company’s e-scooters are fitted with a range of cutting-edge safety features
These include the world’s first app-controlled helmet lock that secures a safety helmet to the e-scooters between trips. E-scooters also have a topple detection feature that can detect if an e-scooter has been left on its side. This then alerts its operations team to reposition them safely and avoid a trip hazard.
Other innovations include a 000 emergency button which can tell if someone has had a fall. It then helps the rider call the emergency services, voice guidance to educate and warn riders of how to ride safely. And a ‘Follow My Ride’ function that allows riders to share their trip with friends and family in real time.
“With the right regulations, scooters are very handy and a game-changer for encouraging more people to take up active transport”, says Peter McLean, Bicycle NSW CEO
“As we’ve seen in other states and countries, new modes accelerate active travel whilst reducing car trips. Hospitals across London, for example, offer Transport UK-subsidised scooters to their staff. This is due to the massive benefits to health, the economy and the environment. We therefore applaud the partnership between Neuron Mobility and Wollongong council.”