These electrified versions of a child’s toy are becoming a popular form of adult transportation, able to travel at speeds up to 30mph (50km/h) and even carry two people. One can see their appeal, especially in urban areas, since they reduce traffic congestion, are maneuverable, easy to learn, and do not take up much space. But because of the reckless riding of some people, they are posing a risk to pedestrians.
French police are searching for two women after the death of a pedestrian who was hit by an electric scooter in Paris, officials say.
The 31-year-old victim, an Italian citizen named only as Miriam, was walking along the Seine early on Monday when she was hit by the e-scooter.
The pair were reportedly travelling at high speed, and did not stop.
The case has renewed the debate over e-scooters in Paris, where there have been concerns for the safety of pedestrians.
In 2019, the French government introduced rules after hundreds of incidents, including several deaths. Riders are required to be at least 12 and cannot ride their scooter on the pavement.
Single-track vehicles like bicycles and motorbikes are important subjects of research in vehicle dynamics. Therefore, the theoretical results for bicycles will be used for escooters, too. However, the parameters of bicycles and escooters are very different: The bicyclists are sitting on their vehicles while the scooters are standing. Moreover, the bicycles have big wheels with tires generating gyroscopic forces and escooters have only small often rigid wheels. The knowledge of how the main parameters of the model affect its stability and maneuverability will allow design modifications that may lead to safer vehicles and will result in the reduction of accidents in urban mobility through these vehicles.
Because of the smaller wheels, the stability of e-scooters is quite different from that of bicycles..
Using the 25 bicycle benchmark parameter listed in for the computation of the eigenvalues to check the lateral stability, it turns out that the benchmark bicycle is statically unstable at low speeds, asymptotic stable for medium speeds and oscillatory unstable at high speeds. As well-known, bicycles can be ridden with hands off. However, the self-stability is weak, and in Germany it is illegal to ride a bicycle free-handed on public roads.
In this paper the 25 bicycle benchmark parameters are replaced by the corresponding 25 escooter benchmark parameters recently computationally evaluated and documented in the Institute Report. Now, it turns out that the benchmark escooter is completely unstable, it can’t be ridden freehanded at all. However, for bicycles at low and high speeds as well as escooters at all speeds stable riding is achieved by steering torques controlled by the experience of the rider.
Learning riding a two-wheeler is comparatively easy. Even in Germany bicycle and escooter riders don’t need a license. But for scooters and insurance is required and the maximum speed has to be limited to 20 km/h. Escooters are not permitted on walk-ways, they have to use cycle tracks in Germany and, if not available, they have to ride on roads.
It is going to take some time for people to get used to the dynamics of scooters and for drivers to see e-scooters on the roads.