In a video posted on The Straits Times, Grabfood couriers who are also personal mobility device (PMD) users express their opinions over the ban, and how it’s changed their situation as Singaporean citizens.
The video featured three different Grabfood riders, who still took out their PMDs for their daily run delivering food. Their sentiments were quite negative in the face of the warnings issues to them, and they tried to explain why the ban was unfair in the opinion.
The PMD ban goes into effect today, with over 100 riders of the devices being issues warnings as per the rules of implementation, according to The Straits Times. From November 5 until December 31, 2019, PMD riders would only get warnings as the law allows for an adjustment period until the punishments are implemented.
After December 31, PMD riders who are seen to be using the device on footpaths, roads, and greenery without permission may be fined up to $2000 and jailed for three months.
Grabfood couriers hurt the most by the ban
While other food courier services like Foodpanda and Deliveroo say that only a small number of riders on their roster are affected, Grabfood has expressed that they want to open a dialogue with the government for their riders.
“We are just trying to make a living,” was the sentiment of most riders interviewed in the video. This is also the same thing that other riders are saying in other online forums and on their Facebook pages.
Another Grabfood rider also said that they wouldn’t be a delivery rider if they could work a different job or if it was easy to find a job that pays as much and that offered trucker insurance.
They blame the so-called “black sheep,” who are the reckless drivers, some of which have caused serious injury and even death to pedestrians thanks to their callous use of PMDs.
A video by a man named Kelvin Ho has gone viral, where he berates society, the government, and no one in particular for the ban on PMDs.
He said that people should be responsible for themselves, and that they shouldn’t walk while looking at their phone. He said that he would be switching to a bicycle soon in light of the ban. He also supported the arrest of reckless PMD users and drivers, just like how reckless car and truck drivers are arrested and charged.
Pedestrians and privileged non-users support the ban
As for the ban’s supporters, some are calling for a complete ban for all PMDs, especially after some models have proven to be fire hazards that damage property when left alone to charge. A recent report showed two HDB units blackened by flame after a PMD left charging caused a fire big enough to engulf both units.
Suggestions for vocational license
While other people may be firmly on both sides of the issue, some support the use of PMDs as long as a license is given, which carries hours of training and the understanding that the e-scooter would be used for work, and not for recreation.