The number of Brisbane e-scooter riders fined for not wearing helmets could rise dramatically as double the vehicles, plus shared e-bikes, hit footpaths this month.
Police data shows the number of fines issued so far this year hit 536 as of May 31, compared with 449 across all of 2020, as the council released its long-awaited strategy for the sector with a goal of reducing the offending rate.
Eight-hundred dockless bikes will join a doubled fleet of 2000 electric scooters across the city from July 22 after Neuron Mobility and newcomer Beam were announced by Brisbane City Council as the successful bidders for the next round of operating permits.
Brisbane is seen as a forward-thinking city by the sector, as states such as NSW push back on the rollout of scooters, and described its recently released e-mobility strategy as a world-first.
The strategy advocates for stronger enforcement of helmet use, and safe riding in high-pedestrian areas.
The council’s public and active transport committee chair, Ryan Murphy, would not be drawn on how the helmet offence rate had been tracking but said work had been done with operators to ensure all users had access to them.
“We have also worked with operators to develop in-app reminders about helmet safety for riders,” Cr Murphy said.
“Some operators even offer incentives to riders who snap a helmet selfie before starting their trip.”
Safety concerns have been raised since the scooters appeared on Brisbane streets in November 2018, with ongoing pedestrian issues around dumping and the potential for collisions included in a number of recent submissions to the draft strategy.