BIHAMK ORGANISES THE FIRST PERSONAL MOBILITY DEVICES ROUNDTABLE IN BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA ON “E-SCOOTER RIDERS SAFETY AND RELATED LEGISLATION” | Federation Internationale de l'Automobile

BIHAMK ORGANISES THE FIRST PERSONAL MOBILITY DEVICES ROUNDTABLE IN BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA ON “E-SCOOTER RIDERS SAFETY AND RELATED LEGISLATION”

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10.11.22

In the last three years, there has been a sharp increase in the number of e-scooter users throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina. To address the challenges related to this rapid growth, FIA Member Club the Bosnia and Herzegovina Automobile Club (BIHAMK) organised the first ever Roundtable on Personal Mobility Devices in the country, focusing on “E-scooter Riders Safety and Related Legislation”, with the support of the FIA Sustainable Mobility Programme.

The rise in the number of e-scooter users in Bosnia and Herzegovina can be attributed mainly to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and trend of avoiding public transport use, saving money otherwise spent on expensive fuel or avoiding traffic jams, i.e. reducing time to reach desired destination within the urban traffic zones. Apart from with these e-scooter riders-related benefits, increased use of this type of Personal Mobility Devices (PMDs) has undoubtedly had positive effects on air quality and has helped reduce transport's contribution to carbon emissions in the cities around the country. 

However, the popularisation of e-scooter use in Bosnia and Herzegovina also brought many unresolved issues, primarily road safety related ones (non-existence of adequate road infrastructure or legislation at the national level) which was the main reason for BIHAMK to organise a Roundtable on PMDs around the theme “E-scooter Riders Safety and Related Legislation”. This Roundtable, supported by the FIA Sustainable Mobility Programme, was successfully organised on 18 October 2022 in Sarajevo and was the occasion to announce a major e-mobility conference BIHAMK will organise in the beginning of 2023. 

Because it dealt with such a pressing topic, the Roundtable attracted considerable media attention while gathering all major stakeholders interested in regulating the use of e-scooters in the country: representatives of the relevant Bosnia and Herzegovina authorities, traffic police, BIHAMK, academic community, cyclists association and e-scooter renting companies. The Roundtable welcomed a special guest:  Koninklijke Nederlandse Toeristenbond (ANWB) Public Affairs advisor Ms. Fieke van Schaik.  Ms. Van Schaik delivered an informative presentation that provided the Dutch perspective on the issue and the explanations on policy dilemmas and possible solutions on Light Electric Vehicles (LEVs) in the Netherlands. 

Based upon the Roundtable’s presentations and the results of the extensive research on e-scooter use (nearly 1,000 online respondents) that BIHAMK conducted prior to the event, the participants discussed the best ways Bosnia and Herzegovina e-scooter issues should be addressed. The conclusions of the first ever public debate on this issue in the country involved: the need to start adequate infrastructural planning (separate lanes, parking spaces) as well as to adopt relevant national legislation to define, inter alia, minimum age, type of protective equipment or obligatory e-scooter riders’s traffic regulations knowledge.

It is hoped the Roundtable’s recommendations, once directed towards relevant national authorities, will assist in building momentum to reach practical and legislative solutions that would facilitate safer integration of e-scooters as a sustainable mobility solution into current transport network of Bosnia and Herzegovina, especially in urban areas.