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Around the world in less than 80 days
18 January 2021 : Council news, Environment
The 12-month trial being run by SWT with Zipp Mobility, an Irish e-scooter operator, provides a zero-carbon way to get around town and allow for social distancing.
Since the launch in Taunton in October 2020 the scheme has registered over 6,000 users, making a total of more than 15,000 rides to date.
Just 45 days after the trial started the number of miles travelled on e-scooters hit 24,901, the equivalent distance of once around the world. The total number of miles travelled to date has now surpassed 30,000.
As a mark of its success the Department for Transport (DfT) approved trial, which remains operational throughout lockdown, is now being extended out to Bathpool and Monkton Heathfield.
The Council and Zipp Mobility have also decided to offer free rides for healthcare workers during the lockdown. Healthcare workers need to email firstname.lastname@example.org from their NHS email address with their location and the email address and phone number associated with their Zipp account.
Cllr Peter Pilkington, Executive Member for Climate at SWT, said: “It’s incredible that our e-scooter users have travelled the equivalent of a journey around the world already and even more so that they’ve had such an impact on our carbon footprint in such a short space of time, which is particularly important in line with our commitment to working towards achieving carbon neutrality and climate resilience by 2030.
Zipp Mobility CEO, Charlie Gleeson, said: “The Taunton trial has exceeded our most optimistic projections for ridership and we couldn’t be happier with our team on the ground.
E-scooters are classed as a motor vehicle and can only be used by people over 16 with a provisional or full driving licence when registered as part of a recognised trial.
Privately owned scooters are not part of the trial and remain illegal apart from on privately owned land.
Zipp have added registration numbers to each e-scooter to assist with the reporting of misuse.
The Zipp Mobility e-scooters have anti-viral handlebar wraps that kill 99.98% of viruses and can help eliminate Covid-19 transmission risk. They are also cleaned daily by the local team based at the Zipp Mobility warehouse in Taunton.
You can hire a Zipp e-scooter from any of the parking bays across Taunton. You will be charged £1 to unlock the e-scooter and 10p per minute thereafter using the Zipp Mobility App.
When you have finished your ride simply take it back to any of the parking bays set up at strategic locations around town. If you have a suggestion for where you would like to see a parking bay please contact Taunton@zippmobility.com.
The trial in Taunton is geofenced which means the e-scooters will only work inside permitted areas. The maximum speed limited for this trial has been limited to 13.5mph, and there are slower zones within the trial area.