ELECTRIC scooters are now allowed in Ampang Jaya, Selangor, under a six-month pilot project to boost public transport usage.
Ampang Jaya Municipal Council (MPAJ) has allowed the usage of escooters on its bicycle lanes starting Sept 15.
When contacted, state local government, public transport and new village development committee chairman Ng Sze Han said the initiative was for a six-month trial period, after which it would be reviewed.
“MPAJ will review the suitability and rectify problems, if any, for improvements,” he said.
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In a statement, MPAJ president Mohd Fauzi Mohd Yatim said the usage of micromobility vehicles as a “first and last mile connectivity” was one of the strategies to improve public transport usage.
An agreement was signed with a company to handle the operations of micromobility vehicles in areas under MPAJ’s jurisdiction.
“The company will ensure all vehicles under their supervision are recorded and monitored at all times, and parked in areas designated by MPAJ, with the exception of usage on the bicycle lane.
“We will work together with the company to build awareness of and promote responsible usage,” he said.
The issue made headlines on April 26 after the Transport Ministry banned the use of several types of micromobility vehicles on public roads to safeguard road users, including escooter riders.
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In June, Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong said detailed guidelines on the use of micromobility vehicles would be prepared by the Town and Country Planning Department (PlanMalaysia).
Ahead of these guidelines, all other municipalities will need to look at managing the use of micromobility vehicles.
PlanMalaysia has already begun approaching local authorities on fine-tuning micromobility usage on council roads.
Mohd Fauzi noted that the Transport Ministry did not fully ban the use of micromobility vehicles in the country.
He said such vehicles were allowed to be used in recreational, residential and private areas.
“However, usage on the road depends on conditions set by the local authorities,” he said.
Remarking on escooters among the types of micromobility vehicles, Mohd Fauzi said the number of escooters and areas of operation were subject to change.
“The number is not fixed, to ensure demand meets supply, as the objective of the service is to encourage people to use public transport.
“Among the places where escooters, which have a maximum speed limit of 25km/h, are allowed to be parked are bus stops and LRT stations,” he added.
Escooter riders are known to haphazardly leave the vehicles after use. When asked how MPAJ would prevent this, Mohd Fauzi said users who failed to park at appropriate places would be fined RM10 by the company.
“The company will face enforcement action such as confiscation of the vehicles and a fine if the rules are not followed,” he said.
The use of micromobility vehicles was launched during MPAJ’s Car-Free Day event at Padang Perbandaran MPAJ in Pandan Indah earlier this month.
Present for the event was Selangor infrastructure and public amenities, agriculture modernisation and agro-based industry committee chairman Izham Hashim.