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Friday, March 1, 2024

Scooters block disabled people on the sidewalks – Extrajudicial enforcement and their confiscation is being considered

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In recent months, the occupation of sidewalks by rental electric scooters has caused discomfort and frustration for disabled people in wheelchairs, a problem recognized by the Association of Municipalities, which has begun to study the possibility of imposing fines or even confiscation of scooters left on sidewalks and obstructing the smooth flow of pedestrians.

In a letter to the relevant bodies, the Paraplegics Organization of Cyprus calls for immediate measures to be taken, as it is characteristically stated, “recently it has been found that where licenses were given to electric skate rental companies to operate, they are installed by both the companies and the users on the sidewalks. This creates an obstacle and danger to the movement of pedestrians and the disabled and often the pavement is inaccessible for people in wheelchairs or people pushing a pram with an infant”.

While the use of personal mobility devices is prohibited on sidewalks, however, skates are offered for use on sidewalks since there are no other available places to place them. As OPAK notes in its letter, “this in itself creates a culture of abuse of the sidewalk. Action should be taken immediately so that the companies, if they continue to operate, have a responsibility to ensure that their skates do not become obstacles to the movement of pedestrians and disabled people on them.”

The Organization identified a similar problem, to a much lesser extent, in rental bicycles, with the following photos showing the extent of the problem:

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The president of the Union of Municipalities, Andreas Vyras, is in common agreement with what OPAK is complaining about, who admits the problem, announcing at the same time that ways are being studied to resolve the issue.

As reported to REPORTER, Mr. Vyras, “indeed, the situation with scooters today is problematic. Despite the fact that a legislation has been created that allows personal mobility devices to circulate on cycle paths and in areas defined by the Municipality, unfortunately, we see an uncontrolled picture with their parking on various sidewalks”.

A particular problem, Mr. Vyras added, “is the fact that a scooter user can pick up the device from one point and then, after reaching his destination, leave it where he arrives and leave” .

However, the president of the Union of Municipalities left open the possibility that when the Municipality detects scooters parked in prohibited areas, it will confiscate them. “We will study with our legal counsel our next moves and will consider the possibility that if any scooters obstruct smooth traffic, they will be confiscated by the City. It will take some time, so that it will also be studied by the Union of Municipalities and we can come to concrete decisions”.

If extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial extra-judicial issuance, is something that will be studied legislatively,’ said Mr. Vyras. But if this right exists, to whom should the extrajudicial writ be issued? To the operator himself who used it for a few minutes, or to the company itself? There are several safeguards that must be considered so that there are no problems. We have to see if the Legislation covers us, but even if it doesn’t, we will consider the possibility of differentiating the law”.

How the company responds

At the same time, the company that manages a large portion of scooters in Cyprus, claims that personal mobility devices are checked by them daily, so that they are in places that do not hinder the movement of citizens.

Speaking to REPORTER, the manager of a scooter company in Cyprus, Grigorios Kononenko, stated that, “from our side, we have ensured that the scooters if they are on the sidewalk have the necessary space, nor that a person in a stroller or a mother pushing a stroller with her child. It is something that we monitor every day with our staff on the streets, so that the scooters are properly sorted and do not obstruct the smooth passage of pedestrians”.

Whether there is a possibility of finding special places to park the scooters instead of on the sidewalks, Mr. Kononenko said, is a complex issue. “Unfortunately, the answer is not that simple as we, for our part, have to meet the needs of the world. That is, where we see that there is a need and demand, we accordingly add more scooters. In this case, we want to do everything possible so that we don’t disturb people who want to pass through a point.”

What the company manager pointed out, is that, “the nests we choose to place the scooters, we make sure they don’t disturb the pedestrians”, to add that, “in Nicosia today there are around 330 scooters in circulation. Soon we are going to expand to other provinces, and more advanced scooters with more functions will be available to the public.”

READ HERE:</b > A total of 350 scooters on the streets of Nicosia – How to use them and their cost

Source: reporter.com.cy
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