Rome follows Brussels and drastically reduces e-scooters

Rome has not gone as far as Paris, but instead of a total ban, the Eternal City, following the example of Brussels, is limiting the number of rental e-scooters from 14 500 to 9 000 from 1 September. At the same time, the city is also implementing new rules to regulate the use of the shared e-scooter, or monopattino as it is called in Italian.

New rules for rental e-scooters have been in place in Italy since June. They included a license plate and a speed limit; they were no longer allowed to be used outside built-up areas, and a helmet requirement was also introduced.

But now Rome is also tightening the rules for rental e-scooters, hugely popular with locals and tourists alike. Henceforth, only three instead of nine operators operate in the Italian capital – Bird, Dott, and Lime won the public tender last year.

The three companies can operate 3 000 vehicles each, meaning there will be around 5 000 fewer rental e-scooters whizzing around Rome. There will be an even bigger cut in the historic city center: only 900 rental e-scooters will be allowed to circulate there.

Stricter rules

Like cars and mopeds, every e-scooter will also get a license plate, complete with a QR code, from which the owner’s or user’s identity can be traced. Users will also be required to register with their identity card.

The maximum permitted speed on urban roads will be lowered from 25 km/hour to 20 km/hour and only 6 km/hour in pedestrian areas. You must also be 18 years old to rent an e-scooter from now on.

Parking will only be allowed in authorized drop zones used by the service companies. Thanks to automated control, those who park outside the identified drop zones will continue to pay for the service. The drop zones are mainly situated near metro stations, bus stops, and park-and-ride lots.

In case of abandonment of the vehicle in dangerous areas or creating degradation and hindrance, a fine is also foreseen. In the event of infringements, rental companies risk suspending or revoking authorization.

Order to the chaos

“A new page is being turned on shared e-scooters,” said Mayor Roberto Gualtieri, a politician of the Democratic Party (PD). “The new service and the new regulation will make this electric micro-mobility service significantly better, safer, and more widespread.”

“With these new provisions, we want to bring order to a situation that did not have clear rules or planning: another important step for the dignity of the capital,” concluded the mayor.


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