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Electric scooters get green light from Vancouver city council

They were illegal, but a pilot program has launched.
ElectricKickScooter-Getty-FrancescoCarta
This might be a thing you see in Vancouver now.

Electric kick scooters are now allowed on Vancouver streets but there are some rules and regulations.

While commonly seen on the city's streets and sidewalks, electric kick scooters, motorized skateboards and mono-boards were all illegal to use in public until this week. City council voted last week to officially allow them as part of a provincial pilot program.

"The electric kick scooter pilot project provides an opportunity for participating communities and the Province to research, test, and evaluate the safety and operation of electric kick scooters in an effort to expand sustainable transportation options," states a report to council.

All the Vancouvers are participating in the pilot (City of Vancouver, City of North Vancouver, City of West Vancouver and the District of North Vancouver), as are Kelowna and Vernon. Safety will be a major point of research during the pilot says Mayor Kennedy Stewart in a press release.

"As the use of electric devices becomes even more widespread, it’s important for us to better understand these emerging sustainable modes of transportation," he adds.

A variety of rules are in place for those using the different electronic wheel devices. Operators must be 16 years old, the devices need to meet provincial requirements, they must be limited to speeds below 24 km/h, they're prohibited from being used on sidewalks, the seawall and major streets and rental/share programs are not allowed at this time.

They are allowed in protected bike lanes and minor streets.

The pilot program will run until April 5, 2024. Staff will have an interim report in 2023.