Electric scooter sharing comes to Rome

American e-scooter sharing companies Lime and Bird launch in Rome.

Electric scooter sharing is now a reality in Rome following the go-ahead from Italy's transport ministry regarding the circulation of new forms of urban micro-mobility on city streets.

The e-scooter sharing scheme is provided by American companies Lime and Bird, with the latter operating as Bird Rides Italy in collaboration with Italy's Enel X.

Lime and Bird are both present in more than 100 cities worldwide, and usage is limited to one person per scooter, for users aged 18 or over. Rental costs €1 to unlock the scooters, or monopattini in Italian, followed by a rate per minute, with maximum speeds of around 25km per hour.

The arrival of the e-scooters in Rome follows continued bad press for scooter sharing companies worldwide.

In New Zealand a Lime scooter user was killed in a road accident on 24 June while Parisians are protesting the multiple cases of scooter users crashing into pedestrians and the careless parking of the two-wheeled "trottinettes" on pavements.

Notwithstanding Rome's problematic sampietrini, the electric scooter sharing companies will attempt to succeed in a city where several bike-sharing shemes have failed in recent years.