Micromobility refers to a range of small, lightweight vehicles or modes of transport operated or driven by individual users. It can include electric bicycles and scooters as well as unicycles, segways, skateboards, roller skates, roller blades, air wheels and more!
Many cities now offer shared micromobility options, including e-scooters for hire. These forms of transport can offer people access to potentially healthier, and more climate friendly ways to get around.
E-scooters in Whanganui
Whanganui has e-scooters! To hire a scooter, download the Beam App for Apple or Android and sign up. You'll see available scooters near you in the App.
In June 2022 Whanganui District Council and Whanganui’s regional economic development agency, Whanganui & Partners, welcomed micromobility company Beam to trial its e-scooters over a 20 month period. Beam operate in Australia and the Asia Pacific and has also worked with local councils to introduce Beam e-scooters in Palmerston North and Whāngarei. Currently, 100 scooters are operating in the urban area of Whanganui. This will increase to 200 in the spring and summer months of 2022/23.
The council supports this initiative as it offers residents and visitors alike a greater variety of transport options. Our role during the trial is to agree guidelines around safety, compliance and appropriate scooter use with Beam. This includes where scooters can, and can’t be used, and agreements with the council about how Beam will respond to any complaints or concerns from the community.
Whanganui District Council’s agreement with Beam
In a memorandum of understanding, the council and Beam have agreed that all Beam scooters in Whanganui:
- operate from 6.00am to 10.00pm, Monday to Sunday (during the 18 month trial period)
- are GPS tracked and restricted to a maximum speed of 25km per hour
- Are restricted to 15km per hour in the central city areas
- are available to all Whanganui residents and visitors over the age of 16
- are compliant with Waka Kotahi NZTA requirements for wheeled recreational devices
- are regularly inspected and maintained to ensure they remain compliant.
Beam’s staff will ensure that scooters are collected and returned to docking stations and are not parked or left in the no parking or exclusion zones.
During the trial the four lower blocks of Victoria Avenue are classed as exclusion zones. Beam e-scooters not be able to operate in these zones.
Map showing the currently determined exclusion (black), no parking (red) and reduced speed (orange) zones:
Please ride safely and according to the weather conditions. Be aware of pedestrians and other road or pathway users. Watch out for doors opening or people exiting driveways. When you’ve finished using your e-scooter, please park it upright and close to the kerb so it does not block access or damage vehicles or property.
Beam has safety tips and in-app safety sessions for riders, visit Safety (ridebeam.com)
Accidents and reporting
If you are involved in an accident, or a near miss, or you see an incorrectly parked Beam e-scooter, please report this directly to Beam. Phone: 09 801 0906 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit: www.ridebeam.com
If your complaint is not resolved we encourage you to report the issue to the council as the territorial roading authority. You can do this online at: Report a problem Whanganui District Council
Before you report an issue or lodge a complaint, please note that:
- Under the New Zealand Road Code e-scooters can be used on footpaths, shared pathways and roads.
- A helmet is not legally required but is recommended.
- The speed limit for e-scooters is the same as the road speed limit in a given area.
- E-scooters must be operated as near as practicable to the edge of the roadway when operated on the road corridor.
- On footpaths e-scooter riders must be careful and considerate of other pathway users. A scooter must be operated at a speed that doesn't put other people on the footpath at risk. And must give way to pedestrians and mobility device users.
For more information, visit the NZTA website