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Rome to Impose New Rules to Limit E-Scooter Incidents in the ‘Wild West’ |  Italy

Authorities in Rome are to impose new rules on electric scooters, such as restricting use to adults with ID, after a number of accidents and near-misses in the city.

The electric scooter rental market has exploded in recent years, with 14,500 scooters currently available in the Italian capital, supplied by seven licensed companies.

Authorities are working to quell the situation, including people riding on the sidewalks and sometimes with more than one person on board.

Seventeen people have been killed in Italy in the past two years after incidents involving electric scooters, according to consumer advocacy group Codacons.

Its leader, Carlo Rienzi, last month described Rome as “a wild west, with scooters going where they shouldn’t, often with two people on board, going over the speed limit”.

Rome police say they record an average of 15 accidents per month, according to AFP.

The new rules include restricting the use of electric scooters to adults with official ID and limiting the number of operators in the city to three.

There will also be restrictions on parking, an early move by US company Bird, which recently announced that its scooters in the city center can only be left in designated areas.

The speed limit will also be reduced from 25 km/h (15 mph) to 20 on roads and six in pedestrian areas.

The draft regulation, which should come into force in January 2023, has pleased many.

“They cut you off. They pass on the right, on the left, they get stuck in front of us and risk being crushed, ”says Paolo Facioni, bus driver.

Residents also complain that scooters are thrown haphazardly down narrow sidewalks, blocking access for strollers and wheelchairs.

For those using the scooters, however, concerns have been raised, including about reduced speed limits.

The announcement comes the same month an American tourist caused €25,000 (£21,000) in damage after he launched his electric scooter down the Spanish steps of Rome.

The incident was filmed by a passerby and police later caught up to the 28-year-old and fined her and a 29-year-old male companion, who had rolled her electric scooter down the marble steps of the 18th century, €400 each. .

The couple were also banned from returning to the monument.

Agence France-Presse contributed to this report

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