Panel calls for PMD riders to be at least 16 and to pass a theory test before riding on public paths

The panel is asking that it be a requirement for e-scooter users to pass a theory test; and to ban the use of mobile phones when riding "unless the mobile phone is mounted or used in a hands-free manner".
The panel is asking that it be a requirement for e-scooter users to pass a theory test; and to ban the use of mobile phones when riding "unless the mobile phone is mounted or used in a hands-free manner".ST PHOTO: KUA CHEE SIONG

SINGAPORE – Personal mobility device (PMD) users should be aged at least 16, and pass a theory test before they are allowed on public paths, said the Active Mobility Advisory Panel (AMAP).

It issued its latest set of recommendations on Friday (Sept 27) to the Government, which include mandating that businesses procure third-party liability insurance to cover e-scooter riders who are riding in the course of work. 

All three major food delivery companies – GrabFood, Deliveroo and FoodPanda – already have such a coverage for their riders.

Dr Faishal Ibrahim, head of the panel, posted on Facebook on Friday morning that he and other panel members were "deeply saddened" by the death of Madam Ong Bee Eng, a 65-year-old cyclist who collided with an e-scooter last Saturday.

Senior Minister of State for Transport Lam Pin Min, in a Facebook post, said the Ministry of Transport has received the latest recommendations.

"We will study these recommendations and provide our response in due course."

Dr Faishal said that in the year ahead, the panel will actively monitor the situation and prepare the industry and community to move towards mandatory insurance for all e-scooter users.

Senior Minister of State for Transport, Dr Lam Pin Min, also on Facebook, said the Ministry of Transport has received the latest recommendations. 

“We will study these recommendations and provide our response in due course.” 

Dr Faishal said that in the year ahead, the panel will actively monitor the situation and prepare the industry and community to move towards mandatory insurance for all e-scooter users.

The panel also called for PMD riders to be at least 16 years old if they are to ride on public paths unsupervised. 

“Those below the age of 16 can continue to ride under adult supervision,” Dr Faishal added.

The panel is also asking that it be a requirement for e-scooter users to pass a theory test; and to ban the use of mobile phones when riding “unless the mobile phone is mounted or used in a hands-free manner”.

 
 
 

Explaining why it is not calling for insurance coverage to be extended to all PMD users, the panel noted that current policies were relatively costly and had exclusions clauses.

“More time is needed for the panel and Land Transport Authority to work with the insurance industry to study the risk pool, design, and structure of individual insurance options,” the panel said.

“This will facilitate the development of more affordable and comprehensive third-party liability insurance products without overly restrictive payout terms.”

For pedestrians, the panel is calling for a “code of conduct” to help them “to share paths safely”.

The panel’s move comes amid mounting calls for PMDs to be banned. A five-month-old online petition calling for the ban has garnered just under 48,000 signatures as of 2.20pm Friday afternoon. 

Others have called for stricter regulations and enforcement actions, and better infrastructure. 

Yet, others are calling for the speed limit to be brought down further to 6kmh, like in Europe. It is now 10kmh.