DUNTON, U.K. Spin, the micromobility unit of Ford Motor Company, has announced that its e-scooters have been ridden more than 100,000 times in Essex.
The milestone has been achieved in just five months since the e-scooters went on trial across six service areas in Essex, partly driven by a growing need for a socially-distanced means of transport as people slowly return to being out and about, including commuting to work and running errands.
Each trial has started on a small-scale and is constantly evaluated in collaboration with Essex County Council (ECC) and local authorities and is driven by demand. Spin manages per-minute hire-schemes in Basildon, Chelmsford, Clacton-on-Sea, Colchester and a slightly different scheme called Spin+ in Brentwood and Braintree where customers can hire an e-scooter longer term and have sole access to it 24/7.
With lockdown easing and more pleasant weather, people are more open to get on a Spin e-scooter. To meet this demand there are currently more than 500 free-floating e-scooters in operation in Essex.
Rider data confirms that Spin e-scooters are used for short journeys, on average 3 km in distance and 23 minutes in length, which is in line with one of the overall objectives of the scheme. Almost half of the rides (46,600) have taken place in Basildon, Spin’s first Essex location to launch five months ago, but Colchester is catching up fast (27,500 rides) where Spin launched less than three months ago, followed by Chelmsford (21,000) and Clacton-on-Sea (6,900).
As part of its commitment to safe riding, Spin has also begun a series of its Spin Safe in-person training events across Essex to educate riders on how to safely ride an e-scooter while respecting all road users - including the vulnerable.
So far, 150 people have taken part in sold out Spin Safe events in Basildon and Chelmsford and hundreds more will have the opportunity to participate in the coming months in other locations (Brentwood on 14th-15th May, Clacton-on-Sea on 22nd - 23rd May and Colchester 3th-5th June).
Whilst wearing a helmet is not legally required, Spin has given away more than 700 free helmets to Essex riders and has committed to giving away thousands of more at its training events. Spin's vehicle speed has recently been reduced to 12.5 MPH from 15.5 MPH to further ensure safety, while in slow-ride zones speed is restricted to 10 MPH.
Commenting on the 100,000 rides milestone, Steve Pyer, UK Country Manager at Spin, said: “The pace of e-scooter adoption in Essex represents an exciting shift to more sustainable transport in line with the council’s Safer Greener Healthier campaign. Now that lockdown restrictions are easing, we’re seeing more people use our e-scooters for short journeys to get them to key destinations across the region and reduce the number of short car journeys across Essex.”
He added: “Safety remains our top priority and we’re continuing to educate riders and the wider community about how to ride and park our free-floating e-scooters safely. We do this through a wide range of activities including digital campaigns, in-app notifications, in-person training events, free helmet giveaways. As well as partnerships with London Vision, the sight-loss charity, RoSPA, the road safety organisation and the Sensory Action Alliance, supporting those with sight or hearing loss.”
Through its various programmes, Spin supports local communities by providing accessible transport to those most in need, with nearly 500 individuals benefiting from them so far. It has seen a steady adoption of its Everyday Heroes programme that offers 30-minute free rides to eligible NHS workers, with more than 430 signed up in Essex. As for Spin Access, its programme for the unemployed and those on low-income, Spin has so far supported more than 60 individuals by offering half-price rides. Both programmes remain open for new applicants.