First electric scooter rider killed in Paris traffic accident
A man, riding his electric scooter, was killed after collided with a truck in Paris today.
The 25-year-old was riding the scooter in the busy Goutte d’Or neighborhood in the north of the city when the accident happened.
He was rushed to hospital where he died of his injuries, the Paris emergency services said.
It was the first fatality involving electric scooters in the French capital, as concerns over their safety keep growing.
The truck driver has been arrested with prosecutors opening an investigation into “involuntary manslaughter”.
It appears that the truck driver had the right of way at the time.
It was the first deadly accident involving an electric scooter within the city limits, police and the mayor’s office confirmed.
According to press reports, an 81-year-old man died in April in Levallois-Perret outside Paris, days after being knocked over by an electric scooter.
Just a year after they first appeared on the Paris streets, mushrooming electric scooters have become a gigantic headache for the Paris authorities who are now rushing to implement some kind of framework for their use.
Mayor Anne Hidalgo had on Thursday announced a ban on parking electric scooters on the sidewalk and said their speed on roads should be limited to 20 kilometres per hour (12 miles per hour).
Paris has already introduced fines of 135 euros ($150) for riding electric scooters on the sidewalk.
Parisians have embraced scooters as a quick and cheap way to get around since the “dockless” devices are unlocked with a phone app and can be left anywhere when a ride is finished.
But critics say they are a grave safety risk both for users and pedestrians while scooters strewn randomly across the city have also become an eyesore.
French Transport Minister Elisabeth Borne on Tuesday said she was in favor of new mobility options but admitted the development of the scooter market was “totally anarchic, and this poses safety problems”.
She said legislation would be in the pipeline later this year to provide a framework on rules for scooter usage.
But the government was still against making it obligatory to wear a helmet on a scooter or on a bicycle for the over 12s, she said.