Dutch court: Stint remains prohibited on public roads
The electric wagon, Stint, or ‘bolderkar’ as it’s called in Dutch, “has rightly been removed from the public road”. That is the verdict of the Utrecht judge in the lawsuit filed by Michelle van Zundert from day-care centre, Het Kinderstraatje, in Almere.
The Stints can therefore certainly not be used until the end of the year. According to the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, it takes that long before the investigation into the safety of the vehicle is completed.
Several serious incidents
The decision of Minister Cora van Nieuwenhuizen of Infrastructure and Public Works to ban the Stint from the road was “based on several serious incidents related to the brake. The Stints could only stop by turning the ignition key over, sometimes while it was driving at maximum speed (17,2 km/h).”
The judge noted that the investigation into the safety of the electric wagon is in a hurry. “The Minister will have to proceed expeditiously so that all those involved are not in an unreasonably long period of uncertainty.”
Stint inventor, Edwin Renzen, has already applied for bankruptcy because he could no longer meet his financial obligations. Renzen, who attended the court’s session together with a number of his employees, had hoped a ruling in favour of the Stint could help the company to make a new start. “I’m done with it for a while and I’m ready to go on holiday”, he replied after the court’s decision.
No alternative to the stint
Day-care host, Het Kinderstraatje, filed the lawsuit against the Minister because it has no alternative to the Stint for transporting the children. The Stint is, or was, popular with many day-care centres and postal workers in the Netherlands.
The use of the Stint was banned after the tragic accident in Oss on 20 September, when four children died on a railway crossing when a Stint was hit by a train. Another child and a supervisor were seriously injured.