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Taipei to crack down on personal transporters

City councilor raises alarms over rising use despite being banned

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Taipei Mayor Chiang Wan-an rides an electric kick scooter during an interpellation on Nov. 30. (CNA photo)

Taipei Mayor Chiang Wan-an rides an electric kick scooter during an interpellation on Nov. 30. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taipei is intensifying its clampdown on personal transporters on city roads, with potential fines reaching up to NT$3,600 (US$115).

Last week, Taipei City Councilor Lee Fu Chung-wu (李傅中武) from the Kuomintang (KMT) raised concerns about inadequate law enforcement, leading to the widespread use of personal transporters. Lee highlighted the availability of the devices through retailers and e-commerce platforms, per CNA.

Personal transporters include powered unicycles, kick scooters, and Segway. Usage of such vehicles is on the rise, posing safety risks.

Notably, a video from August showcased a man riding an electric kick scooter on Taoyuan's mountain roads. This drew criticism of the city police department's failure to intervene, even though the individual passed two police cars.

According to the Road Traffic Management and Penalty Act (道路交通管理處罰條例), local governments should determine regulations for personal mobility devices. These are categorized as slow-moving vehicles with a maximum speed of 25 kph.

In Taipei, powered transporters are banned on roads, in parks, green spaces, and plazas. These devices are permitted exclusively on privately owned areas, while those who break the law can face fines ranging from NT$1,200 to NT$3,600.

As of November, Taipei has recorded 285 violations and 39 traffic accidents associated with personal mobility device use, according to the Department of Transportation. Police stations averaged just 1.7 prosecutions per month in the first 10 months, Lee pointed out, prompting the pledge to crack down on the transporters.