The Aruba Driving School Association calls for regulations concerning electric kick scooters and trike motorcycles

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Recently, Aruba is seeing an increase in electronic vehicles like the kick scooters found in the hotels areas and trike motorcycles. At this moment, there are no types of regulations in terms of traffic laws addressing the use of these vehicles, according to the Aruba Driving School Association (VRA).

Because of this, Tomas Ruiz, secretary of VRA and Wilfred Hart, retired chief of traffic police, expressed that these types of vehicles must include special licenses. According to them, there are a few types of vehicles with which there are no special licenses needed, because these are currently not properly defined within the traffic laws of Aruba.

For example, the definition of a (trike) motorcycle in the eyes of the law states that motorcycles up to 600 kilograms (approx. 1322 pounds) are permitted to be used on the road, but this law does correlate with the laws surrounding license categories: “meaning that if the motorcycle weighs 450 to 500 kilos (992 to 1002 pounds), you cannot obtain a license for it, because this limit is not included in the license category for motorcycles. Nor does it fall in the license category for cars or trucks, but these are still rented out to tourists.”

In these past few days, VRA has announced through the media certain points that there are discussing in order to modify the current law surrounding these vehicles. There are calling on authorities to take this matter seriously: “What does it take to implement a regulation? When an accident happens?”

It can also be observed, especially around the hotel area in Noord, that there is an increase of electronic kick scooters being used, primarily by tourists. The association has also commented on these vehicles, saying that tourists need an insurance to ride them in case of an accident.

In the past, kick scooters were usually used by children, but thanks to technological advancements, adults are also seen enjoying these electronic kick scooters. These allow you to drive longer distance at a speed of 30 kilometers (18 miles) per hour, but at the same time that they started manufacturing these types of scooters, new regulations had to be put in place. The Netherlands is an example of a country that has successfully implemented this.

According to Hart, The Netherlands has built special bike lanes, where these types of scooters are allowed to drive on up to a certain speed. In Aruba, we have certain areas called “bebouwde kom” in Dutch, where drivers are only permitted to drive a maximum of 50 kilometers (30 miles) per hour. Outside of these areas, like the main road that stretches in the southern part of the island, and the double lane highways, the maximum speed is 80 kilometers (50 miles) per hour, with a minimum of 50. Electronic kick scooters going at a maximum of 30 kph are not permitted to drive on these roads. Other requirements for the electronic scooter include the driver being 16 or over and knows traffic laws, a special permit that shows that the driver has taken a test and passed, the driver must wear protective gear and the vehicle must have a plate number.

If these regulations are not put in place, Hart pointed out that this could create a big problem for locals and tourists that buy or rent these types of vehicles: “but the government is doing nothing about it,” Hart finalized.