Electric scooter and bike rental firm Lime has launched its own ‘parking wardens’ in London to encourage responsible parking – by handing out free rides.
The Lime Parking Wardens were stations close to busy e-scooter bays in central London, including sites in Soho and Covent Garden, over the Bank Holiday weekend. They gave free rides to e-scooter and e-bike riders that parked responsible, placing notices on machines that have been parked well.
The good parking notices are designed to help teach rides what constitutes considerate parking by both highlighting it and offering reminders and tips.
While most of the government-backed rental e-scooter schemes in the UK now require machines to be parked within set areas, rental e-bike schemes are generally ‘dockless’. That means riders can end journeys wherever they want within the rental zone’s boundary.
There has been some controversy due to e-scooters and e-bikes being left blocking pavements or other thoroughfares. Westminster Council, which isn’t part of any rental e-bike trials, recently started to seize rental e-bikes that it felt had been parked unsafely within its borough.
That has led to a number of initiatives to highlight and encourage good parking behaviour.
Lime’s parking wardens are telling riders to always park e-scooters in designated bays, avoid blocking walkways, pavements, the entrances to underground stations and bus stops, and to park away from private properties, driveways and accessibility ramps.
Lime will expand the parking wardens to other London areas in the coming weeks.
Hal Stevenson, Lime UK’s public affairs chief, said: “We know most of our riders park responsibly and we want to thank them. The introduction of parking wardens enables us to reward our customers and help them better understand what constitutes responsible parking, and why it’s so important to ensure our service is inclusive.
“Our increased foot patrol also lets us correct any incidents of misparking in a time efficient manner, with the aim to make all journeys more efficient and enjoyable for all.”
Lime aims to remove any vehicle that is reported as being parked inconsiderately within one hour, and also reserves the right to fine users for irresponsible parking – and even ban repeat offenders. Inconsiderate parking can be reported to firstname.lastname@example.org.