Dubai bans e-scooters in metro, tram: Residents caught off guard after late-night announcement

E-scooter riders were being informed by metro staff early today that they can no longer bring their vehicles inside the trains, many then turned back home

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Angel Tesorero

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KT Photos: Angel Tesorero
KT Photos: Angel Tesorero

Published: Fri 1 Mar 2024, 9:10 AM

Last updated: Tue 5 Mar 2024, 12:36 PM

E-scooter users were caught completely off guard after they were informed that electric scooters are no longer allowed inside Dubai Metro and Tram from today, March 1. Many were left with no choice but to park their e-scooters outside Metro stations, while others decided to go back home.

The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) tweeted the decision on Thursday (February 29) night: “To ensure your safety and that of others, the use of e-scooters inside Dubai Metro and Dubai Tram will be prohibited, starting Friday, March 1." RTA also used the hashtag 'Your safety our priority'.


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Residents like Sajid and Sam, who have been using e-scooters as their last-mile mobility solution, were surprised with the announcement and had carried their portable ride on Friday morning.


“It was very abrupt,” Sam, a Filipino expat who works as a freelancer, told Khaleej Times. “I carry my e-scooter everywhere I go and it is really very convenient for me to go around the city with my e-scooter,” he added.

Sam
Sam

Now, the bigger problem for Sam is that he has to shell out more money for transport after the ban was enforced.

“My average monthly expense for public transport is usually Dh350 for the unlimited use of Dubai Metro. I use my e-scooter from home to the Metro, and from the Metro to work. Then, from work to Metro and back home again. Now, because I work as a freelancer and I go to several places, I think I will have to spend around Dh100 a day on taxi rides,” he added.

Staff at Dubai Metro stations have been politely informing e-scooter riders that they can no longer bring their vehicles inside the trains. A public service announcement was playing on loop at every station.

Sam, who lives in Al Barsha, had no choice but to go back home to leave his scooter.

Sajid, a 50-year-old Indian expat, also had no choice but to take his e-scooter back home. He said he was taken by surprise on the sudden decision as e-scooters have become increasingly popular among UAE residents because of their practicality.

Sajid
Sajid

“E-scooters have also been largely promoted as first- and last-mile green mobility solutions, and I find it impractical not being able to bring them inside the train – as we have been used to doing,” he added.

Another e-scooter user, Dom, was also surprised with the announcement to ban e-scooters but he said he understood the decision.

Dom
Dom

Two weeks ago, services on Onpassive Metro Station were delayed for nearly an hour after smoke was detected from an electric scooter.

Dom, who bought his e-scooter for Dh1,500 six months ago, admitted the portable ride is volatile if not kept properly.

Experts have a warned against using substandard e-scooters that are available online chargers. E-scooters are powered by lithium-ion batteries that can overheat, catch fire and cause an explosion, especially when damaged or manufactured defectively.

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