Use of electric scooters to be considered as more hit the pavement

The growing use of e-scooters and other small electric vehicles is forcing the Government to reconsider how and where they should be used.

E-scooters are classified as low powered vehicles, and it’s thought thousands are being sold every year in New Zealand.

They’re permitted on footpaths, so as their speeds and numbers rise, pedestrians are increasingly concerned.

Some e-scooters on the market can travel at speeds of 45kmh.

Pedestrian advocate Dr Lynley Hood says “we’ve got to come to grips with these things and not have them all shoved onto the footpath”.

“Because of the speed and momentum, they can do a lot of damage to people who don’t see them coming,” she said.

ViaStrada’s John Lieswyn led recent research into low-powered vehicle use in New Zealand, and says he’s aware of those concerns.

“At the moment, as long as people are behaving responsibly, the police aren’t going to stop you from using it on a footpath or shared path,” he said.

“But as there are more and more of these things hitting the streets and the footpaths I think that regulatory agencies around the world are going to have to implement some rules.”

He hopes to see New Zealand introduce regulations around speed soon.

“Our research basically made that recommendation if it's a higher speed i.e. up to 25kmh for electric vehicle, like an electric scooter, it should be permitted for the cycle way,” Mr Lieswyn said.

TradeMe statistics show a 10 per cent growth in the sale of low powered vehicles such as e-scooters in the past year and the Government’s aware of that trend.

Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter says “The Ministry of Transport is reviewing footpath rules to consider what types of vehicles should be allowed to use the footpath and in what ways”.

"Footpaths need to remain safe and accessible places for walking, especially for the elderly and people with disabilities” she said.

E-scooters are classified as low powered vehicles, and it’s thought thousands are being sold every year in New Zealand. Source: 1 NEWS

Man in critical condition after stabbing at property near Opotiki

A man has been hospitalised in a critical condition following a stabbing at a property near Opotiki, in the Bay of Plenty, this morning.

The man has been transported to Whakatāne Hospital after he was stabbed at an address on Waiotahe Valley Road, in Waiotahi, at 7.25am.

The people involved in the incident are known to each other, police say.

Police know the identity of the suspect and are working to locate him.

A scene examination is currently being carried out at the address.

Source: 1 NEWS

Person in critical condition after being hit by bus in Christchurch

One person’s been hospitalised in a critical condition after being hit by a bus in Christchurch this morning.

Emergency services were called to Main North Road in Redwood around 8am.

A police spokesperson says the road has been closed and motorists are being asked to follow the direction of emergency services.

A bus driver at the wheel.

'We were really excited' - hear the voices of some of the first New Zealand women to vote 125 years ago

Today marks the 125th anniversary of women’s suffrage in New Zealand, which made our small island the first self-governing nation to grant women the right to vote.

It wasn’t a smooth road, however, and although not as long or violent as other campaigns for the vote in the UK and US years later, Kiwi women faced their share of opposition.

A strong push for the vote began in the late 1870s when electoral bills were being put forward to Parliament which had clauses saying it gave women the right to vote, not just men.

But it was much earlier that a handful of women began advocating for voting rights for women.

“It was just a few maverick voices at that point, but it was being discussed,” says Victoria University's Professor Charlotte Macdonald.

The movement picked up steam when the Women’s Christian Temperance formed nationwide in New Zealand.

That’s when women started saying, “we want to change the politics in the places that we live”, says Professor Macdonald.

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For more on this story, watch 1 NEWS at 6pm. Source: 1 NEWS

It wasn’t just for political equality, but for moral reform to protect women, she says.

“They were saying ‘we need to organise to get the vote because without that no matter what we do we’re just going to get cast aside’.”

From there, women began a much larger campaign which involved petitioning, public meetings, writing letters to the editor and working with sympathetic MPs.

A lot of their efforts failed, but the women tirelessly continued to work for equality in voting rights.

From 1886 to 1892, a series of petitions were presented to Parliament.

“Petitioning was the only way in which women, and people outside Parliament, could have their voice heard and the British suffrage campaign was petitioning at the same time so it’s a well-known technique,” says Otago University's Professor Barbara Brookes.

“It was also a really important educationally technique because if you’re going to sign a petition people usually explain to you what it’s about.”

Nearly 32,000 signatures were obtained from women across the country including many Māori women.

It was on September 19, 1893, following another petition and electoral bill passed in the House when Governor Lord Glasgow signed the bill into law and women granted the right to vote.

When election day finally comes in November 28, 1893, 82 per cent of women over the age of 21 turn out to vote.

This changed the course of women’s lives in New Zealand leading to many policy changes for women, female MP being elected to Parliament 40 years later and eventually three female prime ministers.

And take a brief look at the journey Kiwi women took to be granted the right to vote in NZ. Source: 1 NEWS