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Feature

Guide to safe scooting

With e-scooter-sharing services available on campus and personal mobility devices gaining popularity, Lester Kok uncovers some quick facts about the impact of e-scooter collisions and rider safety

ILLUSTRATIONS: CHRIS FOO

Worse than a boxer’s knockout punch

By next year, all personal mobility devices must adhere to a maximum speed of 10km/h on footpaths. This improves safety for both riders and pedestrians, as the lower speed limit gives both parties more time to react and prevent collisions. According to Assoc Prof Yap Fook Fah from the School of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering, in a collision, an adult rider moving at 15km/h could transfer more energy to a pedestrian than that from a trained boxer’s punch. His research has also found that a lowered speed of 10 km/h significantly reduces the energy transfer to the pedestrian in the event of a collision.

  • 20% – 50% more chance of a serious head injury when the speed at collision is 15km/h instead of 10km/h
  • When a pedestrian or rider’s head hits the ground, the force of impact is similar to the weight of a car
  • More than twice the kinetic energy than at 10km/h
  • About 1m more distance needed to come to a complete stop, compared to 10km/h