Blind Camden man, 65, ‘terrified’ to leave the house after e-scooters ‘take over’ streets

A blind Camden resident is ‘terrified’ to leave his house due to the growing number of e-scooters in the borough.

The 65-year-old, who is also partially deaf, has had close run ins with scooter riders before and told My London about the dangers they pose to blind people such as himself.

Currently there are only private scooters in the borough but the Council have announced the roll out of a e-scooter rental trial from October.

READ MORE: London e-scooters trial scheme expands to include most of Central London

Camden resident David is ‘terrified’ he won’t be able to leave the hous

The resident, who needs a cane to walk the streets wanted to be identified only as David, told My London: “I’m slowly becoming more and more scared to leave the house.

“I’m worried in October when we’re going ahead with these trials, I’ll be petrified to leave the house.

“I’d be unprotected, vulnerable. Not just me, others as well.”

Although e-scooters are seen across the city, privately owned ones are not allowed to be used on public roads, pavements or cycle lanes.

A select number of London boroughs have trialled rental e-scooters which are run by companies Dott, Lime and TIER.

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E-scooter rentals left lying across the pavement in Shepherd’s Bush

Although they’re meant to left neatly in designated areas, sometimes they’re left strewn across the pavement proving an obstruction particularly to vulnerable people

David told My London about a particularly close run in he had with an e-scooter near where he lives in Kentish Town.

He said: “I was shocked when my guide helper and myself were walking the back streets in Kentish Town the other day.

“An e-scooter came whizzing past and narrowly missed me. If it had hit me It would have been a very serious accident.

“If these trials go ahead I’d be terrified to walk the streets again. I need to go to the doctors, to the shops, just like everyone else.”

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David needs a cane to get round the streets of London

Sarah Gayton is the Shared Space Co-ordinator for the National Federation of the Blind of the UK.

She described the way e-scooters are being rolled out as a ‘scandal’.

She said: “It’s a natural trip hazard with a kick board. What you’re finding is a lot of visually impaired people are tripping over them.

“What’s going to happen in London is the numbers will explode. There are all over the pavement.

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“You’re going to go arse over tit. Because blind and visually impaired people need to really concentrate when going down the street.

“To have these trip hazards is an absolute nightmare. It has to stop. There are so many mobility options in London. This isn’t needed.”

My London has approached Camden Council for comment.

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