A STUNNED homeowner woke up to find more than 100 scooters piled up outside his house – after it was made an official parking spot.
Shane Clarke couldn't believe his eyes when he found the e-scooters stacked up outside his home in Bristol.
The retired medic now suspects an app error for the Voi e-scooters is to blame.
The 60-year-old said the app had removed all parking locations except for the spot outside his home – leaving users no choice but to leave the electric scooters there.
Shane said: "We lost count at one point so we might have broken the hundred mark.
''What would be really helpful is if somebody had said 'sorry about this, we'll work on it'.
"The sub-contractors who came to collect them said 'bloody hell we've not seen anything like this'."
And he said he was frustrated by the huge numbers of e-scooters that had filled the pavement, creating an obstacle for locals.
Shane added: "My wife saw one of our local elderly residents tripping up over a scooter outside."
The scooters have since been cleared by the council from outside the home – which is opposite the Bristol Downs.
The use of the Voi scooters is controlled via an app for booking and duration of the ride.
Voi scooters can be rented in Bristol, Bath and South Gloucestershire through the West of England Combined Authority's trial scheme.
Each scooter is 'geo-tagged' so will only operate in certain zones, and at limited speeds.
Speeds on e-scooters are capped at 15.5mph however they can be modified to go as fast as 70mph.
Users have to park them in designated parking spots generally on broad pavements and if they fail to park them in those spots, users get fined.
Current e-scooter rules in Britain
The Government is running several trials across the UK for e-scooters to which the below rules apply.
To use a rental e-scooter you must have the category Q entitlement on your driving licence – a full licence includes this category.
If you are on a provisional licence you do not need to show your L plates.
You must trial an e-scooter on the road (except motorways) and in cycle lanes.
The devices are not allowed on pavements.
Only one person is allowed to use an e-scooter at a time.
The maximum speed for an e-scooter is 15.5mph.
E-scooters must only be used within the local area that is hosting the trial.
For a list of the trial areas, click here.
However, the rules for private e-scooters differ to hired ones.
It is against the law to use a privately owned e-scooter in public.
If you use one you could face a fine, penalty points and have your device impounded.
You can rent e-scooters on apps such as Lime, Bird, Voi, WIND, Circ, Tier, Beam and Bunny.
Users can buy e-scooters online ranging from £299 to £3,559
Only adults with a driving licence are allowed to hire e-scooters.
However, e-scooters and e-bikes have been associated with rising crime rates.
Tragically, 14-year-old 14-year-old Fares Maatou was stabbed in East London, with the attacker allegedly trying to take an e-scooter.
And in another case, six-year-old Jamie Smith was also injured by a 17-year-old e-scooter owner in August last year, leaving Jamie with a fractured skull and multiple cuts in Leicester.
Shane emphasised he has no issues with the scooters being trialled in Bristol, but feels the way they're stored need to change.
He added: "From my point of view I have no problem at all with the scooters apart from the obvious – sometimes they're not ridden responsibly. I think they're a nice idea.
"Talking to other hirers – they're asking 'where is the alternative nearest parking space?' They're saying this is the most convenient spot.
"As they're supposed to be on the road – if we're going to go ahead with the experiment it would make sense for them to be somewhere with space around them, perhaps the waterfront.
"Or alternatively give over parking spaces for them.
"But I guess that would be a whole other debate as to whether residents would be happy with that."
It has been over five months since a Government trial scheme saw e-scooters pop up across the South West, including in Gloucester, Yeovil, Bristol and Bath.
While privately-owned scooters are still illegal to use on public roads and pavements, the scheme has been launched to see how well they fair on the region's roads.
Richard Corbett, the Regional General Manager of Voi UK & Ireland, previously told ITV News West Country: "E-scooters are here to really solve the transport challenge that we have in the UK.
"We need to find an alternative form of transport to riding by car, 50 per cent of nitrogen dioxide in our atmosphere is from road transport."
Bristol Council said: “The e-scooter trial in Bristol is being managed by Voi and the West of England Combined Authority (WECA).
"While the council has no power to enforce traffic offences, we are continuing to work with them to address ongoing issues and ensure they reinforce the message that users should use and park e-scooters responsibly.”
Voi spoke to The Sun on the error to say: “We are implementing a maximum capacity per parking zone to ensure only a limited number of scooters can be parked in each parking hub.
They continued: "We believe it’s important to put things into perspective as this is not something that happens regularly.
"Since we first launched the trial back in October 2021, there have been over 460K rides, and over 1.3M km travelled using the Voi scooters.
"This particular area is very popular with e-scooter users. Our team on the ground monitors the e-scooter activity on a daily basis and they were at the location to fix the situation as soon as it happened.
"We are also liaising with Bristol City Council and the West of England Combined Authority to ensure immediate action can be taken to add additional parking hubs to the area while looking at the installation of physical parking infrastructure.
"This will ensure that e-scooters are well distributed across this sought after e-scooter area in Bristol."
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