Ride sharing e-scooter company Lime has zoomed into the Auckland market but some members of the public raising concerns about their safety.

Early this week, 600 dock-free scooters were released into the city, but already complaints have surfaced around people using them dangerously and leaving them in unsafe places.

One Twitter user wrote: "I nearly got knocked over by one in the viaduct."

A commuter told the Herald that Auckland Transport staff were seen on Monday running around the viaduct trying to get people off the scooters.


A spokesperson for Auckland Transport said they had worked closely with Auckland Council on Lime's licencing and welcomed its service, but would be monitoring the situation.

"We will continue to monitor the services and make sure the numbers of scooters and shared bikes introduced is appropriate for the city centre and surrounding areas," a spokesperson said.

Another Twitter user wrote: "There were a couple of scooters parked in the middle of the footpath on Queen St, causing trip hazards to pedestrians on foot. Do contractors pick these up too? Love the concept but will there be designated parking zones in the future or is it a parking free for all?"

According to the Auckland Council, one person has so far complained to them about a scooter that was parked dangerously.

In a statement to the Herald, Auckland Transport said it was up to users to leave them in an appropriate public place.

"Lime's licences, granted by Auckland Council, set out the locations that the service provider can leave them, and users are encouraged to leave them in appropriate public places and make sure there is space for people walking," a spokesperson said.

People employed as independent contractors, called "juicers", collect the scooters around 9pm, charge them up and distribute them around 4am the next day.

Roughly 80 per cent of the scooters are picked up by "juicers", while full-time Lime staff collect the rest.


The scooters, which can travel at speeds of up to 22-23km/h, don't require a helmet when riding them, and can be rode on the footpath or the road.

According to the New Zealand Transport Agency's website, e-scooters are classed as a low-powered vehicle that do not require registration or a drivers licence – providing their maximum power output does not exceed 300W.

However, when being used on the road, e-scooters must be operated as near as practicable to the edge of the roadway.

A spokesperson for the New Zealand Transport Agency said the e-scooters were being closely monitored.

"E-scooters have been allowed since 2004. The NZ Transport Agency is closely monitoring their usage and uptake," a spokesperson said.

"The main guidance for e-scooter riders is to be as safe as possible and be aware that cyclists, other road users and pedestrians may not hear them approaching.

"Good behaviour remains the priority when people ride e-scooters and anyone riding dangerously on the footpath or road may be subject to Police enforcement."

The Lime scooters have generated a lot of buzz since their launch on Monday.


The Lime app raced to number one, up 384 places, on the app store this week as commuters experiment with the scooters.

Lime launcher Cameron Swanson told the Herald they had seen huge demand for the scooters.

"We are seeing a huge amount of demand," Swanson said.

"The fact that we're number one in the app store, above Instagram and Facebook, is exceptional."

In addition to launching in Auckland, 400 of the e-scooters were also released in Christchurch, with a review in three months to establish whether more will be needed, and possible expansion into other areas.