TODAY |

Calls to ban e-scooters in Brisbane after man's death

Safety advocates say more people will die unless the Brisbane City Council slaps an immediate ban on electric scooters.

The Pedestrian Council of Australia said the death of a rider, who suffered traumatic head injuries after falling from a Lime hire scooter, shows how dangerous they are.

The group's chief Harold Scruby said riders on footpaths are ducking and weaving among pedestrians at 25km/h, and the risks cannot be safely managed.

"A man has now died. What more evidence do you need that these things have got to be banned," he told the ABC.

"France is just banning all scooters on all footpaths, only last week. From September in LA, where they invented the things, you cannot ride a scooter on a footpath."

The 50-year-old rider died in hospital after crashing down a set of stairs at Brisbane's South Bank on Wednesday.

Despite wearing a helmet he suffered traumatic head injuries and went to cardiac arrest as a result of those injuries. Paramedics revived him but he died in hospital the next day.

The city council, which is currently in the middle of a tender process that could see a second scooter company licensed to operate in Brisbane, is waiting on the results of a investigation into the death.

"The information that we receive from that investigation will help us, going forward, to make a decision on e-scooters," Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said.

"Obviously anything that comes out of this investigation is something we'll take very seriously."

Lime insists its scooters are safe, despite the ambulance service revealing 80 people wound up in hospital over a two-month period as a result of scooter incidents. Of those, 12 needed surgery.

Company spokesman Mitchell Price said a scooter malfunction had been ruled out as a factor in the man's death.

He attacked Mr Scruby for his "insensitive and inappropriate" comments about scooter safety, saying the focus should be on caring for the dead man's family.

"Lime scooters are safe," Mr Price said.

"It is far too early for us to be changing anything, to be commenting on this accident that has happened."

Mr Scruby said anyone who tried to take a walk through Brisbane would beg to differ with scooter riders - often without helmets and doubling other people - risking people's safety.

He wants Lime scooters off the streets but is open to the idea of a 10km/h speed limit, something backed by Vision Australia amid concerns for the vision impaired.

AUCKLAND - OCT 15 2018: Lime electric scooters in Auckland, New Zealand. The scooters have a 48km maximum range. Users find, unlock and pay for them using an app and leave them at their destination.
Lime scooters in Auckland. Source: istock.com