Published: 06:00, 29 March 2021
| Updated: 16:16, 29 March 2021
Canterbury's electric scooter service trial zone is to be expanded across the city from today.
From today, all eligible residents can now download the app and use Bird’s electric scooters to get where they need to go without the need of a car.
Bird says it aims to make towns and cities more "liveable" by "helping to solve 'the last mile' problem, where journeys are too short for public transport to be efficient, but too long to walk".
It says many of these journeys have traditionally taken place in cars, and that the increased operational area will enable more residents to leave their cars at home.
Bird’s scooters are regularly sanitised and travelling on a scooter enables people to avoid other more crowded transport alternatives.
The new operational zone includes the Kent and Canterbury Hospital where Bird is currently offering free rides to NHS staff so they can get about while maintaining a social distance from others.
Canterbury West & Canterbury East train stations are also in the new operating zone so people can connect to the stations.
Following the removal of Coronavirus restrictions, Bird will host a number of safety events and helmet giveaways in Canterbury.
The company says safety is a top priority and that initiatives such as speed restrictions and no ride zones will be introduced.
Bird require all riders to be over 18, and hold a provisional or full drivers licence before they can ride.
All riders consent to a safety agreement with Bird, and those who do not act responsibly can be banned from the app.
Charlotte Bailey, General Manager of Bird UK said: “We’ve been blown away by how popular our service has been in Canterbury with thousands of students already using it.
"We hope this expansion can help Canterbury become less congested and polluted by giving everyone an alternative to taking a car, especially as we start to head back to work in the coming weeks and months. Bird has worked closely with the council to ensure that this expansion can best serve the people of Canterbury so we’re really excited to be launching across the city today.”
To use the system:
-Download the Bird app onto your smartphone and create an account (you will need to add your driving licence or provisional to verify your age)
-Open the app and find the nearest Bird
-Scan the code on top of the Bird to unlock it and start your trip
-Put on your helmet and enjoy the ride
-When you’ve reached your destination, find the nearest approved parking zone and end the trip in the app