E-scooter operator Voi Technology has launched a safety campaign this week encouraging riders in Oxford to 'Ride Safe, Park Smart' and always wear a helmet.

People will notice bright coral adverts by Voi around the city over the next four weeks as part of a large-scale marketing campaign to encourage riders across the UK to use their e-scooters safely.

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The e-scooters which started being trialled in Oxford in February have sparked debate amongst residents about whether they are safe.

The Ride Safe, Park Smart campaign is part of Voi’s commitment to constantly look for opportunities to improve rider safety.

So far, safety features introduced since September 2020 include:

  • ‘Reaction test’ which discourages users from riding under the influence of alcohol
  • 'Beginners mode’ which lets users reduce the e-scooter speed to 10mph until they get used to the scooter
  • ‘Helmet Selfie’ which uses an image-classifier AI that can immediately detect if a user is wearing a helmet with 95 per cent accuracy. Helmet-wearers are rewarded with five loyalty points at the end of their ride, which can go towards discounted rides. 
  • ‘End of the Ride’ photo which requires users to take and submit a photo of their parked e-scooter. Riders who fail to park correctly receive a warning in the first instance, and following that a £25 fine is imposed. Voi has seen a 70 per cent improvement in good parking behaviour since the introduction of the new feature, helping to tackle street clutter. 

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Jessica Hockey, senior manager, partnerships & marketing UK & Ireland at Voi Technology said: “Safety is at the heart of all our marketing activity and the goal of this large scale, multi-channel campaign is to ensure our riders have these key safety messages at the top of their mind at all times.”

Jack Samler, general manager at Voi UK and Ireland, said: “People in the UK have embraced Voi’s e-scooters with more than 3.5 million rides taken so far.

"Whether it’s riding to work, running errands or visiting friends and family, we’re committed to ensuring all riders know the rules of the road and are safe when they’re on the move.

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"We hope everyone will see and absorb our new ad campaign over the next few weeks and remember to ride safe, park smart and wear a helmet every time they take a Voi e-scooter.” 

In addition to the campaign, Voi will continue to roll out its online and in-person safety events in Oxford giving away free helmets to participants, as part of its ongoing commitment to educating its riders. 

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