A man caught on camera illegally riding an electric scooter over Auckland’s Harbor Bridge on Monday has been spoken to by police and given a formal warning for the “dangerous act”.
In the video, which was uploaded to TikTok, the person filming is heard calling the rider a “mad, mad, mad dude” as he tails a bus on the scooter.
“We are disappointed to see these types of dangerous acts as depicted in this video for the sake of a social media trend and would ask that this not be replicated,” Senior Sergeant Scott Cunningham told 1News.
About 9.20am on Monday, police were called to a report of a man riding an e-scooter on the Northern Motorway, near Northcote Point.
Police tracked him down at the corner of Esmonde and Barrys Point Roads in Takapuna.
He was spoken to by police and given a formal written traffic warning for being a pedestrian on the motorway.
“Our mission is to prevent crime and harm through exceptional policing and keeping our communities safe is one of our priorities,” Cunningham said.
But this is not the first incident. In 2018 – the year e-scooters hit New Zealand’s shores – police gave a man an infringement notice after he attempted to ride a Lime e-scooter over the Auckland Harbor Bridge.
While the rider in Monday’s case was wearing a helmet, ACC has received thousands of injury claims in the past four years.
From 2018 to October 2022, taxpayers have paid out more than $30.14 million for e-scooter-related injuries.
Among those, there were 2215 new claims for the year to October 31, 2022 – totaling $7.44 million. The average payout was $2931 per claim.
ACC injury prevention leader James Whitaker said e-scooters are a convenient way to get around town, but cautioned “it’s important to look after yourself and others you share the footpath with”.
“Most injuries are preventable by taking a moment to ‘have a hmmm’ and think about what could go wrong,” he told 1News.
“If you are going to use an e-scooter, be sure to ease your way into it, don’t go full throttle straight away, wear a helmet, and don’t mix e-scootering with alcohol.”
ACC also advised riders to respect other road users, wear a helmet, and start off slowly.
“If you’ve never ridden a scooter before, get a feel for it first and find your balance before you go racing off.”