The Council, in partnership with e-scooter provider Ginger, has launched a 12-month trial in Chester.
The trial is part of a Department for Transport (DfT) initiative that was approved by the Government earlier this year.
As part of an effort to ease the pressure on local public transport services during the COVID-19 pandemic, the DfT wants to explore how e-scooters can complement existing transport options, especially for short trips.
Chester's commercial electric scooter rental trial is being provided by Ginger Teleporter Limited trading as Ginger.
As the rental trial will be operated by a third-party commercial operator, all financial risks and costs associated with the day to day running of the scheme are born by Ginger.
The Council working collaboratively with Ginger will ensure the scheme is delivered in a safe and proportionate manner.
Users need to download the Ginger Shared Transport app, which is available in Google Play and Apple App Store, in order to register and book an e-scooter. Through this self-hire process, the e-scooter's brakes will be electronically unlocked for the user to commence their journey. E-scooters can only be rented from one of the advertised parking bay locations and must be returned to an advertised parking bay location to allow the rental to end.
Users must be aged 18 and over, and hold a provisional or full UK driver's licence, or motorcycle licence.
Helmets and gloves are not compulsory, but are highly recommended, while insurance is covered as part of the rental cost.
A phased and scalable rollout will be implemented during the 12-month trial period, with an initial fleet size of 40 e-scooters available by week one of the trial in Chester, ensuring e-scooters are deployed in a controlled and safe manner.
This represents 10 per cent of the potential fleet size that could be deployed during the 12-month trial. The sustainability of the approach and numbers introduced will be determined by market factors i.e. take up and usage, with any fleet size increases subject to operational monitoring and reporting data being reviewed, and to be approved by the Council.
We know there are many different journey types among residents, businesses and visitors that these new vehicles will be able to serve over time, and we are looking forward to working with local stakeholders to demonstrate the benefits as the scheme continues to be rolled-out and evolves.
The legal speed limit for e-scooters in the UK is 15.5mph. Chester's e-scooters maximum speed will be limited to 12mph, as safety is our priority, while users learn how to ride e-scooters.
It is recommended that you only ride at a speed you're comfortable with, and a speed that is appropriate for where you are riding.
There are parts of Chester where any speed is a bad thing - we call them No Go Zones and they're marked in red on the map within Ginger's app. In those areas, the e-scooter will automatically slow to 0mph.
Other parts of Chester have Go Slow Zones and they're marked in orange on the map within Ginger's mobile app. In those areas, the e-scooter's maximum speed will be restricted to a walking pace of 3.7mph.
Chester's e-scooter rental scheme will have GPS geo-fenced dock less parking bay locations throughout the area, and if the e-scooters are not returned to the designated e-scooter docks correctly the user will be unable to end the rental and will continue to incur a charge.
The Council will control e-scooter parking areas to protect against street clutter, with no physical charging infrastructure required, just road markings and signage supported by geo-fenced technology.
Users can view, via Ginger's mobile app, a map outlining the number of parking areas where an e-scooter can be safely parked when they have finished riding. These are the blue circles with the giant P inside them. Park up in one of these areas. The user will push their e-scooter into the designated bay outlined on the ground and deploy the kickstand to keep it from toppling. Then click end ride within the app to finish.
The Department for Transport specify a standard that all e-scooters must meet as part of the trial.
The routes promoted for use are those used by cycles which travel at a similar speed to e-scooters and limit integration with faster traffic.
Users are reminded to always wear a cycle helmet when using an e-scooter. Helmets are recommended but are not a legal requirement.
Each e-scooter is equipped with safety features such, as GPS geo-fencing technology, speed limiter, alarm, lights and a bell.
The registration process includes clear user training, with specific information regarding the use of e-scooters in Chester, with the user operational zonal map regularly updated outlining the schemes operational area, restricted zones and parking locations.
Engagement has already commenced with the Cheshire Constabulary to ensure that measures are in place to avoid misuse. A requirement of the e-scooter supplier will be to ensure their scooters are bright and clearly identifiable. This will make it clear to identify which e-scooter is part of the trial and which is a private e-scooter.
Engagement with disability groups through the Council's Corporate Disability Access Forum is integral to the planning and evolvement of the e-scooter scheme in Chester. User training, e-scooter design, designated routes and restricted speed limits will help to ensure that where e-scooters and pedestrians may share paths there is minimal risk. E-scooters will not be permitted on pedestrian only pavements.
Strict verification and validation processes are in place, requiring all users to register in order to hire e-scooters from Ginger in Chester.
Users will need to be aged 18 or over and hold a provisional, full drivers or motorcycle licence. Users will also have to take a selfie as part of the licence verification process.
This restrictive verification process is conducted during the initial signing-up process, and linked to an individual's mobile phone, restricting duplicate or fraudulent underage accounts.
All of Gingers e-scooters remain operational during this new lockdown.
One of the reasons e-scooters were launched in the UK in the summer, was to help people get around in a safe, COVID secure manner.
So please use our e-scooters for your essential journeys only.
The fleet of e-scooters are regularly cleaned with disinfectant, focusing on the upper mast, handlebars and other contact areas.
Please sanitise your hands before and after a ride. Please think of the person using the scooter after you.
Rides are asked to maintain two metres (six feet) from everyone else while riding. While being encouraged to wear gloves just as they would when using any public transport.
You can use e-scooters where you are allowed to use other motor vehicles - though please stay away from roads with speed limits above 40mph, and even better to stick to 20mph and 30mph roads.
You can get points on your licence for the misuse of an e-scooter, including enabling an underaged driver.
Drink driving rules apply to e-scooters; do not drink and ride.
It's £2 per 20 mins to ride and 50p per 10 mins to pause.
For every additional 10 minutes of ride time, users will be charged £1.
For every additional 10 minutes of pause time, users will be charged 50p.
Yes, you will need your valid licence, full or provisional, on you the first time you ride. You will be asked to photograph it and take a selfie to verify it is your licence.
You must be 18 or over and have a provisional or full driving licence to ride with Ginger.
There are some parts of the service area where it’s really not a good idea to be riding a e-scooter. For instance, a pedestrianised area.
In No Go Zones, an alarm will sound on the e-scooter when you enter and it will slow down to 0mph.
This will adjust once you’re out of the area and go back to normal.
You can see where these areas are on the map within the mobile app. They’re marked in red.
If you ride out of the service area, the same thing will happen. Simply turn around and head back in and you’ll be off again.
There are some parts of the service area where riding at 12mph would not be appropriate. For instance, a shared use area.
In Go Slow Zones, an alarm will sound on the e-scooter when you enter and it will slow down to 3.7mph.
This will adjust once you're out of the area and go back to normal.
You can see where these areas are on the map within the app. They're marked in orange.
Ginger recommends that this is more than enough for several average user's journeys within a day. Batteries with insufficient charge are collected daily during the e-scooters down time, for recharging and deep cleansing by Ginger's local team.
No new e-scooter rides are permitted after 10pm. After this time, a local Ginger employee will carry out servicing, maintenance and repairs on the fleet, by swapping-out and rechanging batteries, redistributing the fleet across the city while conducting a deep cleansing of each e-scooter.
Only one person at a time is permitted to ride an e-scooter.
Yes, 100KG, which is equivalent to 15 stone, 10.5lb.
No. Privately owned e-scooters will remain illegal to use on public roads and pavements, with riders at risk of a £300 fixed penalty notice and six points on their driving licence if stopped by police.
Yes, e-scooters are currently only available for rental between 8am and 10pm, seven days a week. Some bank holidays or special event exclusions may apply, and will be advertised in advance via Ginger's mobile app.
After this time, a local Ginger employee will carry out servicing, maintenance and repairs on the fleet, by swapping-out and recharging batteries, redistributing the fleet across the city while conducting a deep cleansing of each e-scooter.
Yes, e-scooters can be pre-booked in advance within a limited time slot for a fee.
The e-scooters are tracked and remotely monitored as they contain GPS technology. Users adhere to Gingers usage policy, to avoid misuse and damage. While Ginger will work with Cheshire Constabulary in retrieving any stolen or misused e-scooters.
All questions should be submitted by email: