By Contributing Reporter
SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL – The São Paulo City Hall stated last week that within the next two weeks it would be implementing new rules on the use of electric scooters in the capital, including the obligatory use of helmets and the prohibition of circulating on sidewalks.
Non-compliance fines may range from R$100 to R$20,000.
“Fines are imposed on companies owning the scooters, similarly to fines imposed on a car rental company. Then the rental company can pass this fine onto the customer. Over the next two weeks, the CET and the GCM will orient people on the new rules and will begin issuing fines from the 15th day onwards,” said Mayor Bruno Covas (PSDB).
The new rules are:
- Compulsory wearing of helmets;
- Prohibition against operating on sidewalks;
- Scooters may only circulate on bike paths, bike lanes or streets with speed limits of up to 40 km/h;
- The scooter’s maximum speed is 20 km/h;
Non-compliant drivers may be held liable in civil, criminal and administrative proceedings;
Traffic authorities, GCMs, and agents of subdivisions shall be responsible for supervision.
According to the City Hall, the measure announced is still provisional. Further detailed rules will be discussed over the next three months with the 11 companies that responded to a public call and signed a disclaimer to provide the service.
Companies are bound to:
- Promote educational campaigns on the correct use of equipment;
- Provide fixed and mobile rental points for identification by apps or websites;
- Collect irregularly parked equipment;
- Be responsible for all damage resulting from the service;
- Keep user data confidential;
- Provide user data to municipal or public security agencies, if requested;
- Report the number of accidents recorded in the system to SMMT, on a monthly basis.
According to the National Department of Traffic (Denatran), scooters are required to comply with the rules for “self-propelled mobility equipment” (having some motorization and with a width and length equal to or less than that of a wheelchair).
In contrast to the rules of the São Paulo City Hall, the Brazilian Traffic Code (CTB) establishes that scooters may only be used on pedestrian paths, bike paths, and lanes but not on the streets.
The scooter is also required to display a speed indicator and horn as well as front, rear and side indicator lights.
According to the agency, each municipality and the Traffic Department (Detran) of the Federal District are responsible for regulating other provisions on the circulation and parking of scooters.