June 29, 2022

Just lately, I really feel that I ranted so much. Often, I hold it to myself as a result of there are a lot of methods to have a look at issues. This time, I really feel that I would like to specific my ideas on this: Are we able to swap PMDs on the footpaths to eBikes on the highway?

Background

With out warning, on 4th November 2019, our Singapore Authorities introduced that every one PMDs (Private Mobility Units) are banned from footpaths from 5th November 2019 onwards.

The most important impression on this information is meals supply riders from the meals supply corporations like GrabFood, Deliveroo, Foodpanda and and so forth.

Then, in an announcement on Friday (8th November), the federal government introduced a joint grant (along with 3 main meals supply corporations – Seize, Deliveroo, Foodpanda) of S$7 million to let these food-delivery riders transit from PMD to a different type of transport to keep away from the lack of their livelihood because of the ban.

This type of transport could be PAB (Energy Assisted Bicycle), PMA (Private Mobility Aids) or the non-powered bicycles.

You may learn the official information beneath

$7 million E-Scooter Commerce-in Grant to Assist Meals Supply Riders Swap to Various Modes of Transport

This eScooter Commerce-in Grant (eTG) permits registered supply riders to commerce in as much as S$1,000.

Beneath this scheme, LTA will match dollar-for-dollar the meals supply corporations’ funding assist for his or her meals supply riders who commerce of their present e-scooters for different LTA-approved units – and every rider will obtain an eTG of as much as $1,000 for PABs or $600 for bicycle. For supply riders with mobility difficulties who’re eligible to make use of PMAs and want to proceed working for his or her supply firm, they too will obtain an eTG of as much as $1,000.

The Threat and Why

Primarily based on the chain of occasions, all appear nicely. The Singapore Authorities has taken speedy steps to assist these affected by this ban.

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Nonetheless, as an individual who drives, rides a bicycle and in addition rides PMDs, I can already see the warning lights of a catastrophe coming.

You may assume that altering from a PMD to a PAB is simply upgrading the wheel measurement and including a pair of pedals to a PMD. On the whole, you is perhaps appropriate.

The issue is that additionally, you will be “upgrading” from a footpath to the highway. This, for my part, goes to go down badly.

Firstly, Singapore roads usually are not bicycle or PAB pleasant. Not like some international locations, our bicycle lanes usually are not on the highway. It’s normally with the footpaths.

For illustration functions solely.

And Singapore drivers usually are not precisely good at co-existing with bicycles or PABs on the highway.

Secondly, PMD customers usually are not acquainted with Singapore highway situations. On a footpath, as an ex-PMD person, the worst you may get is to collide with a pedestrian, a bicycle, different PMDs or fall off from it. On a highway, you’re weak to getting hit by vehicles touring at excessive velocity together with your minimal safety (helmet) since you are small (as in comparison with them) and can’t be seen from their blind spots.

Thirdly, site visitors guidelines apply. What number of of our PMD customers (which might be upgrading to PAB customers) are acquainted with them?

For instance, to make a proper activate a Singapore highway, the rider must filter to the best on the highway and comply with the site visitors guidelines to show proper. With out abilities and data, I imagine it will likely be disastrous to each the PAB riders and motorists. It’s like getting somebody with out a driver’s license to drive on a highway.

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In fact, you possibly can argue that they’ll use the site visitors lights to cross the highway. You’re appropriate in the event that they hassle to dismount from their PABs, push them throughout the site visitors junctions and be a part of again to the highway after the crossing. What number of, do you assume, will do that?

Fourthly, jams on the footpath and PCNs (Park Connectors). With the ban of PMDs on footpaths, some will change to PABs. PABs are typically bigger and take up extra space. On footpaths, PAB customers should push their PABs after dismounting. Think about the width wanted for the PAB and the individual pushing it. Pedestrians should squeeze by way of them on footpaths.

Likewise, for PCNs, extra PABs will imply extra space wanted for them to co-exist with park customers. Primarily based on our present PCNs, not all are upgraded with wider width.

Abstract

I discover it onerous to imagine that the Singapore Authorities would push a ban with out complete ideas on the result. For instance, if the PMD riders’ didn’t complain, will the eTG (eScooter Commerce-in Grant) occurs? Did our Authorities give it some thought within the first place? What’s the anticipated consequence of the ban?

That is my model of “expectation vs actuality”.

Expectation:

  • Lesser complains of PMDs on footpaths.
  • Lesser individuals injured by PMDs on footpaths or PCNs.
  • Persons are proud of the swift determination on the ban.
  • The aim of car-lite society continues regardless of the small hiccups.

Actuality:

  • Growing complains from motorists on PAB customers on the highway.
  • Extra reported accidents (together with deadly accidents) of PAB customers on the highway
  • Extra insurance coverage claims towards PAB customers on the highway
  • Growing complains of PABs blocking the footpaths.
  • Growing complains of congestion on PCNs resulting from PABs
  • Growing reported circumstances of individuals injured by PABs on PCNs
  • eScooter enterprise house owners closing retailers due to the ban
  • Persons are annoyed as a result of they adopted the Authorities’s suggestions to register their eScooters, improve them to adjust to UL2272 certification simply earlier than the ban.
  • Speedsters on PMDs proceed to experience on the highway at excessive velocity.
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There isn’t any good technique to resolve the problems. I’m ranting as a result of if I can see the adverse consequence of the ban, why can’t our Authorities see them. I’m not towards the ban. I’m towards the way in which it was all of the sudden carried out that has effects on the PMD customers and the PMD/meals supply companies.

Extra ideas ought to have been accomplished. Why wasn’t AMAP (Lively Mobility Advisory Panel) being consulted earlier than the ban? If AMAP was so essential within the determination to permit PMDs on footpaths and PCNs initially, they need to be within the dialogue to ban PMDs on footpaths.

What do you assume?