Real feasible solutions to the scooter problem

Let’s hear your thoughts on tackling the large number of scooters and the noise, pollution, danger and traffic chaos they create.

What can realistically be done? e.g. London limiting cars into the city according to license plate numbers

Obviously, this is a healthy democracy so a Singapore-like, authoritarian approach wont’ work. You can’t please everyone of course, but it would have to be fairly democratic in structure.

Ideas anyone?

  • electric scooters are silent, would this create bloodshed on the streets? Do we look when crossing the roads in Taiwan? Will we adapt quickly enough?

  • can buses, MRT, cars absorb the surplus? MRT lines increasing all the time. Less scooters means buses have less obstructed routes, higher efficiency. Traffic in general would flow better without all those scooters, no?

  • would people walk more? many areas with inadequate foot paths, pavements. Government to promote walking and health benefits?

  • it would have to roll out one area/district? at a time? how to legislate and police it? CCTV cameras, RFID tags in license plates? First 1, 2, 3 infractions are forgiven but then 1,000/2,000NT? fine in the mail? A type of “field” of sensors automatically picking up RFID tag in license plate? Surely this technology is dirt cheap and very easy for Taiwan to do (all the manufactures are already here!)

Even if it takes decades, it must be addressed. Some creative solutions are needed

You’re proposing replacing scooters with (at least partially) cars to improve traffic flow?

Are you, perhaps, an American?

“Traffic in general” is scooters.

The chaos isn’t caused by the scooters, its caused by the Taiwanese. Replacing [strike]them[/strike] the Taiwanese democratically isn’t likely to be possible.

EDIT: There are of course a lot of potential non-democratic replacements available just across the water, but by all accounts they are likely to be significantly worse. ENDEDIT.

I’m not proposing anything. I’m no city planner/traffic expert. This whole topic is wide open.

End goal is to drastically minimize number of scooters. Combination of more cars, more MRT and bus use, more walking etc.

No I’m not American. You lost me there on that one.

The scooter mess and noise is caused by the number of scooters. Yes, there are Taiwanese riding those scooters. You lost me on that one too.

Yes, I also doubt if is feasible, but I believe some smart people can come up with some creative, possibly radical measures.
Starting slowly with, say, downtown areas of major cities. Giving inhabitants lots of heads up, forgiving of infractions, etc in the first few years. Obviously old A-Ma driving home with groceries-laden scooter unknowingly rides into prohibited zone ,etc, etc - lots of this type of thing will happen for years afterward.

Also, from a legal, administrative standpoint, who has right to ban scooters in, say, Xinyi district? They ban things like not eating on MRT to keep it clean, so why can’t the same logic be applied? Ban scooters to cut down on noise and air pollution. Didn’t they try it at a few night market, busier areas in Taipei a while back? In Gong Guan I think I saw something??

It’s really the noise and chaos the scooters create, that’s what needs to be addressed. It’s a big problem I believe. One of the things keeping Taiwan from truly shining. I think areas could absorb more cars and buses (especially since it frees up a lot of the road, which was the point I was making). And don’t forget the increase in MRT and walking. But I’m just speculating here. The experts would have to do the analysis.

This would be a very long term vision.

Stock up on water bottles so that you can fight your way into the Taipei city council chambers. Force them to build a system of mass transportation based upon tubes that propel people along luges over the city streets and along the sides of buildings, one person at a time until they reach their target destination.

“real feasible” solutions…

They should be banned from night markets. I can’t stand those selfish idiots hairing through the streets when everyone’s trying to enjoy themselves. Riders should have to get off and walk them through.

  1. Speed bumps put in by the government.
  2. If gov won’t help, citizens put in temporary speed bumps themselves. Yes, it’s illegal, dangerous and could get someone hurt, but scooters could hurt someone too. A heavy chain laid out at night would stop any scooters from crossing it at speed. Yes, there are multiple issues involved with that method…
  3. There are some interesting solutions to the scooter problem in Easy Rider, but try 1 and 2 first.

I think your solutions are too complicated and tech based. Speed bumps are a quick fix, at least in pedestrian areas.

OP, I doubt you will get any workable solutions from this conclave of self-certified poly-maths. You’re talking into the wind.

Good luck anyway…

Henhaochi, yes, let’s take night markets as an example. This is such a clear example of at least one spot where they can easily be banned. They’ve made strolling down those night markets with your partner almost unbearable.

Speed bumps will be a bloodbath. They need to be clearly lit, well marked. Most will just go tearing through them. It will create added noise pollution with all those trucks speeding over them, their cargo clanging around inside, things falling off. But definitely speed bumps should be used more in downtown areas, business districts, science parks, closed communities, newer residential clusters, where you can control signage and lighting, etc better.

I see Holland is having same problems. Anyone been there recently? At least they’re having the debate (6,000 residents signed a petition). … er-problem

It’s really the acknowledging the problem first that stands in the way. Most here have grown up in the cacophony of noise and chaos, it doesn’t bother them so much I guess. Or they don’t speak out.

Perhaps banning them isn’t the solution. Tax breaks, green credits, rebates, other motivations to use bus, MRT, walk…

Keep in mind that the newer buses are quite nice, with swiping in back, middle and front of bus. And the excellent, growing MRT (in cities anyway)

Surely the electric scooter debate is a must (it has been making the political rounds recently). A lower-decibel, more pleasing built in sound so pedestrians aren’t mowed down en masse seems pretty easy solution to me.

I can definitely see there are multiple problems implementing the speed bump idea. Maybe bollards or something would work. I am leaning more towards Il Doge’s bubble Luge idea now.

Small incremental steps. Not complete eradication, but a 50% reduction would make such a difference. And then phase those remaining scooters into quieter electric ones

The ideas and mindset is there, not like it involves anything as complicated as sending people to the moon. They have the 3 person minimum per car at certain times and on certain highways already for example. These type of ideas.

Off the top of my head, let’s ban children under, what? 5 years old on scooters, no delivery of gas tanks on scooters, no scooters in all night markets, no scooters in certain, well marked areas on Sundays, that will take a few off the road, there’s a not too radical first step.

Take the infant/young toddler on scooter as case in point. Come on Taiwan, my god, surely this is a no-brainer. Those fresh lungs breathing in that toxic air. For all the many topics in Taiwan over the years, this has always been one of those “Why?!” one for me, top 3 “why oh why do they still do it??” issues

Ban all 2-strokes (which I hear could become a reality within 5 years). The government should really start pushing electric scooters and motorcycles. Give big local companies like SYM, Kymco, and Aeon motors incentives to manufacture affordable electric scooters and motorcycles.

Yes, it’s really bordering on guilty complacency by government and industry that as we now near 2020, that this high-tech island hasn’t shifted to electric scooters. But I haven’t looked into the data in depth, I’m sure others have better input

Quite challenging to make the bleeding obvious even more bleeding obvious, but I’ll give it a go.

Replacing scooters with cars to improve traffic flow is a patently bloody silly idea, because cars don’t flow as well as scooters do. They are a lot wider, and, since they are often single occupant, they are less efficient in a number of other ways.

I was suggesting you might be American, not because Americans were necessarily bloody silly, but because the US lifestyle is so rooted in car ownership that its a “given”, so an American might be forgiven for not noticing how bloody silly that idea was.

Full credit to you for not hiding behind that excuse.

Like I said, I think your premise is wrong. Scooters are not the problem. They are an efficient (albeit dangerous) form of mass-transport which provides a high level of personal (and therefore labour) mobility which is probably of significant economic benefit to Taiwan.

They are polluting, but almost certainly less so than an equivalent number of cars. Electric scooters would largely address the pollution problem, but you’d still have your “scooter mess” (whatever that is)

The chaos isn’t caused by scooters per se. Its caused by the way Taiwanese drive. This is cultural, and largely immune to quick fixes. Law enforcement and driver training come to mind.

Long term, maybe re-annexation by Japan?

Good to see some passionate debate here about the scooter problem.

Ducked suggests re-annexation with Japan, and agrees too that electric scooters are a part of the solution, but root cause of problem is the drivers, not the scooters. Also, that more cars is definitely not part of the solution

Keep em’ coming people


skyhooks and luges
hold on, lemme get my popcorn :popcorn:

[quote=“BlownWideOpen”]Good to see some passionate debate here about the scooter problem.
If this is your idea of “passionate debate”, I’d hate to see your idea of a farce. Reduce the number of cars first, then we’ll talk about what to do about the scooters.

The easiest thing for them to do is to raise tax and registration on polluting vehicles and to impound scooters that don’t pay or get emission tested. Yes, there would still be too many scooters but getting rid of the shittiest (not worth paying tax/reg or can’t pass emissions) would help some. In addition to that enforcing traffic rules and parking rules would make some reconsider the necessity of a scooter to go a block to 7-11.

Long term Taiwan is investing heavily in mass transit. The Taipei MRT is amazing and many people that I know in Taipei don’t own or almost never ride their scooter. KHH and Taichung are behind but KHH’s MRT system will get a big boost when the light rail route is completed since that many more people will have access to the system. As more and more people switch to mass transit things should improve.

taiwan doesn’t seem to do Big Bang legislation (big changes over night), and there’s very little stick in society here. Biggest problem is the local lobby of scooter manufacturers and scooter mechanics. They tried hinting at controlling scooters in taichung two years back and the scooter Lobby quickly organized protests from ‘the little people’.

I guess reality is like abacus said, slow drip feed of improvement year by year, it’s probably going to be a slow process. That’s how the Vehicle pollution tax is set up as well, newer cars from 2007 on have stricter emission requirements, and bigger engines get taxed more. If they can further tighten the emission requirements from manufacturers that would be the best option while rolling out better public transport. adding tax to fuel is not as good a method as it basically drives people’s costs up.

Abacus and headhoncho, some good points there. I was unaware of the scooter lobby as such and the protests, but can imagine it must follow along these type of lines, and yes, what to do about all those tens of thousands of scooter mechanics and the families they support. Change is so painful.

Was just reminded of this topic again today as me and the lady were trying to enjoy our Sunday stroll. It was obvious to me again for the umpteenth time, that something must be done about those f’ing scooters. At least 70% or more, I’d guess, of Taiwan roads are the old style door opens to street, and pedestrians, scooters, cars, trucks, bicycles, etc all share that one lane road, pedestrians be damned. This can’t be how a modernized country would want to keep going. Granted, I understand fully the huge structural, engineering challenges they face.

But I stress again, for those confused about why I’d get rid of scooters and add more cars, etc. It’s the noise and pandemonium scooters create that I’m more focused on, especially the NOISE!. My solution involves a holistic approach - more cars, better use of buses, more MRT use, more walking, more bicycling, more car pooling, etc.

There’s a scooter problem?

The expanding MRT system has greatly improved Taipei’s traffic condition. You should have see it in 1990!