|My purple chair||
Troy Buswell tests out a segway. Photo: WA today
WA Transport Minister, Troy Buswell has approved regulation amendments enabling the limited use of Segways across the state.
However, use will be restricted to special commercial tour operators within specified areas and under strict conditions.
The electric, personal transporter devices, or Segways, will now be allowed on shared paths, giving WA tourism a boost.
“As the regulations stand, the use of Segways is prohibited on all roads or paths within the State,” Minister Buswell said.
“This amended to the regulations will allow them to be used as part of commercial tours between sunrise and sunset."
Western Australia is now only the second state or territory in the country to approve the use of Segways for tour operators according to the minister and he said he believes that it will be a great tourism opportunity for the State.
But the use of segways will be subject to certain restrictions.
Commercial operators will need to seek approval from the local council or authority of the area in which they propose to operate a segway tour. They will also have to seek approval from the State Government.
“The regulations also specify safety requirements, including training and the use of helmets, that must be met in order for approval to be granted," the Minister said.
"But with these safety regulations in place,I am confident the segways will be welcomed by the public,” he added.
Due to safety issues, the amendments do not extend to allow personal use of segways outside the supervised commercial tours.
Co-founder of Apple and Segway enthusiast Steve Wozniak welcomed WA's move to introduce segway tours saying: “Segways are a benefit to my life in many aspects”.
Mr Wozniak, who travels extensively said he found such transport to be the best form of city tour.
" On a segway tour you are on the ground, with the advantages of a pedestrian tour, but it's much easier on the segway.”
Mr Wozniak visited Perth last year where he did a restricted Segway tour of Kings Park.