Ford’s Spin extends Essex e-scooter hire scheme

Electric Vehicles, Transport

Spin, Ford’s micromobility unit, has announced the extension of its e-scooter hire schemes in Essex to March 2022, aligned with the updated Department for Transport (DfT) legislation.

In agreement with the local authority districts, Spin will continue to offer short term hire to riders in Basildon, Chelmsford and Colchester but will conclude the trial in Clacton-on-Sea by the end of this month. Spin’s long-term e-scooter rental scheme in Brentwood and Braintree will also carry on.

Spin first launched its public hire e-scooter scheme in Essex in December 2020 and since then riders have taken more than 450,000 e-scooter rides. Chelmsford has seen the most rides (146,000), followed by Colchester (143,000), Basildon (124,000) and Clacton-on-Sea, which was launched in March 2021 (37,500).

The extension also includes the Spin Access and Spin Everyday Heroes schemes to support NHS workers and low-income riders with free and subsidised rides in Essex, to make essential journeys affordable. Since launch, Spin’s Everyday Heroes programme had 947 NHS workers signing up while nearly 100 riders are taking advantage of Spin Access.

In Clacton-on-Sea, the eight-month trial will conclude and operations will cease by the end of October. During this period nearly 6,000 riders opted for Spin’s greener transport option, clocking 37,500 journeys. Out of these riders, 40 work for the NHS, who were able to take advantage of Spin Everyday Heroes’ free rides and 20 riders on low income benefited from Spin Access’ subsidised rates.

Rider data reveals Spin e-scooters are most often used for short journeys, on average 3 km in distance and 23 minutes in length, with 82% of riders stating they have used a Spin e-scooter to replace a solo drive car journey at least once already. This is aiding Essex County Council (ECC) in its goal to lower carbon emissions across the region as part of its Safer, Greener, Healthier campaign. 

Says Peter Blackman, Chair, Essex E-scooter Trial Stakeholder Group:

“The extension of the trial is sensible and welcome as it will provide more time to implement and examine the efficacy of ongoing improvements arising from the constructive dialogue our Group is having with Spin and Essex County Council. Plus the Essex experiences are influencing the national framework.

“By the end of the extended trial we trust legislation will be forthcoming to provide a smooth transfer from trial to the permanent, but continually improving, safe use of legitimate e-scooters and eradication of the dangerous illegal private ones. In accordance with the recently revised Highway Code, users of all e-vehicles must assume all pedestrians they see may be visually impaired, deaf, frail or have a disability.”

Commenting on the trial extension, Steve Pyer, UK&I Country Manager at Spin adds:

“The success of our e-scooter trials in Essex represents an exciting shift to a more sustainable transport solution aligned with Essex County Council’s Safer Green Healthier campaign. Our community-centred, consultative approach with local authorities and collaboration with the Essex E-scooter Trial Stakeholder group demonstrates that micromobility solutions can provide a safe, sustainable, and reliable service that meet the needs of all residents.”

Chris Price
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