A 55-year-old driver of an electric scooter died on Wednesday morning after a collision with a bus in the Eixample district, Barcelona. Extra bitter is that the municipality of the Spanish city had announced a ban on electric scooters in public transport just the day before.
The collision occurred on Wednesday morning, January 11, around 3.30 am at the intersection of Avinguda de Roma and Carrer Comte d’Urgell. The victim was the 55 year old driver of the electric scooter. Two ambulances were sent to the scene of the accident, but nothing could be done to save the man. Immediately after the accident, the Guardia Urbana launched an investigation into how this could have happened. The municipality has called in local aid agencies to provide psychological help to the victim’s family.
Temporary ban on electric scooters in public transport Barcelona
The City Council of Barcelona announced on January 10 that electric scooters will no longer be allowed on public transport. This will come into effect from February 1. It is a temporary ban after the engine of a scooter recently caught fire in one of the carriages of the railway company Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat. This ban will initially apply for six months and will apply to trains, buses, trams and metros.
Years of discussion about the use of electric scooters in traffic in Spain
For years, there has been discussion at national, but also at regional and municipal level about the safety of electric scooters in traffic. Every year hundreds of accidents occur with these means of transport. In 2021, there were thirteen deaths after accidents involving electric scooters.
Driver behavior important in the event of a lack of regulation
This is partly due to the fact that you do not need a driver’s license to drive such a scooter. Municipalities must also draw up their own rules about where such an electric scooter may be used. The Spanish traffic office has only appointed a few guidelines at national level, such as not being allowed to drive on the pavement or highways, unless it is indicated that this is allowed. The speed may also not exceed 25 km/h and the driver must wear a helmet.
However, in practice, it happens often that a scooter has been tuned up, or drivers do not wear a helmet. Several Spanish cities have already taken stricter action and hand out fines when necessary. Yet this hardly seems to impress many drivers given the number of accidents that still take place in Spain.