Riding pink flamingo electric scooters – fear on the streets for some

A pink Flamingo electric scooter – not parked quite safe! Parallel to the road is best 🙂

Many of my peers are afraid of electric scooters on our city streets – or rather, the footpaths.  As someone who lives in the inner city, in fact, at the top of Cuba Street, Wellington, or as I call it the funky part of town, I’m used to skateboards, rollerblades, electric skateboards and many others sharing the footpath with me – as well as on Cuba Street itself.

For me the rule is very simple, if they are behind me, ignore the noise of a skateboard or such like speeding towards me – I just stay on my trajectory and trust that they will avoid me.  So far, that’s what’s happened.  I’ve had no near misses, I just stay on the left as I know if I try and get out of their way they will have no idea where the or which way I (or YOU) are going to move and you are likely to be hit or have a near miss.

As my daughter reminded me, it’s like skiing, it’s the skier that is behind you that has to avoid you, not the other way round.  E scooters are the same.  You just keep going about your business, staying on the left – as we always should – not walking 3 abreast, and all will be well.

Will there be accidents?  Of course, there will be but if you adhere to staying on your own trajectory chances are you will not be involved.

Will the E scooter riders obey all the rules – of course not!  Only yesterday I saw 2 teenage girls riding, wobbling, one of the orange uber ones (Jump) does everybody parked them considerately – hell no!  Common sense is not very common and many scooters are parked at a 45° angle or more from the curb -creating a real hazard for those who are sight impaired.  If you are a scooter rider reading this, please think of those people who are likely to trip over your toy.

Most E scooter riders are considerate and value being able to get around the city speedily. sometimes on footpaths sometimes on the road. sadly many do not use a helmet – this may change, just as skiers have.  We do have to get the cars off the roads,  and scooters are part of the solution AND we do need more people on public transport and we will just have to be considerate of each other

Have I ridden an E scooter – no – but who knows, it could be one of the ‘yets’ in my life.  I’m very aware I’m way more risk-averse since I broke my arm on a walk out to Red Rocks in the seal colony in Wellington. ( if I did I  would use the pink Flamingo as it’s a New Zealand company)

So, watch this space, but don’t hold your breath :):)

safety suggestions from the flamingo guys

 

 

Driving in New Zealand – tips

Driving in another country is often fraught with issues: driving in New Zealand is no different.

Think about it, you are in another country, in a rental car, possibly driving on the ‘wrong side’ of the road, there are few motorways, the dual carriageway roads are often narrow and winding, you round a corner – and this is what you see!

use IMG_7163

Now what!?

Slow down, and if there is a vehicle ahead of you, right in front of the sheep like in this photo, you are lucky, get close in behind it and tailgate slowly through the mob of sheep.

If there is no vehicle for you to follow keep to the left and drive very, very, slowly: the farmer will no doubt get his dogs to move the sheep to the right and out of your way.

However, if the sheep are moving towards you, in other words travelling in the opposite direction to you, once again keep left, and drive very slowly – although I would suggest you just stop on the left, wind down the windows, grab your camera, and enjoy the quiet and smells of the country while being engulfed by a flock of sheep.

Chances are you will never have this happen again so why not just have fun.

For up-to-date and legal information about driving in New Zealand, and to make sure of your safety, please read this  and most of all remember to keep left – especially when turning at intersections.  Many of the trolleys at airports have notices to tell visitors ‘your journey will take longer than you think’ – take heed of this message!

This was the first flock of sheep I had met for years and years so I made the most of it by driving through, then stopping and have the sheep pass me as I stood at the back of my car, with my camera. Enjoy the shots I took.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.