The Australian Automobile Association (AAA) has raised the alarm about the way Australia’s states and territories report their data on e-scooters.
According to the AAA, people who die while riding e-scooters in NSW and Victoria are recorded as motorcyclists, whereas in WA and the ACT, these people are filed into the ‘other’ category.
“There are tens of thousands of e-scooters on Australian roads, yet the official national figures don’t identify e-scooter deaths and injuries,” AAA managing director Michael Bradley said. “E-scooters are an important and growing element of the transport landscape, but we also know there have been deaths reported in the media.”
The AAA is one of the nation’s leading auto industry peak bodies, and in the time period that the group put out its 2024 ‘Benchmarking The Performance of the National Road Safety Strategy’ report, the Association is calling on more transparency when it comes to assessing incidents and fatalities on Australian roads.
The Association noted that the last six months have been the deadliest on Australian roads in the past 13.5 years. While not explicitly mentioned in the report, the AAA shone a light on e-scooters.
E-scooters are electric scooters that can be propelled by a battery and motor, with minimal work from the rider beyond an initial kick and to steer. Because the technology is still developing, laws across the country are a bit fragmented, as are what we even consider e-scooters when it comes to incident reporting.
The AAA wants to see the Australian Government report more openly about e-scooter data. Among sweeping changes to data collection, the Association wants road conditions, police traffic enforcement, and the causes of crashes to be more openly reported.
In December, the Australian Medical Association (AMA) noted a spike in e-scooter-related data in Melbourne -247 riders and nine pedestrians, as reported by AAP.
“Inconsistent state-by-state databases are inadequate to provide Australians with policies that protect them. A national database is needed if the Federal Government is to get serious about improving road safety,” AMA Professor Steve Robson said at the time.
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