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Dutch national rail allows scooters and prohibits recumbent bicycles and tandems

1 day ago

2 minutes

Passenger railway operator Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS) has followed advice from Locov, a group of consumer organizations which represent the interests of train passengers, to enact policy changes.

Source: Fietsberaad CROW

Following advice from Locov, the NS has changed its plans on a few points to regulate the conditions under which travellers are allowed to take a bicycle or folding bicycle on the train. Scooters and e-scooters are allowed on the train as hand luggage and there will be more clarity about where folding bicycles should be placed. As planned, NS will ban recumbent bicycles and tandems from the train.

In April, the Dutch Railways requested advice from the National Consultation on Consumer Interests in Public Transport (Locov) about the proposed adjustments to the general conditions of carriage for taking a bicycle or folding bicycle on the train. Following this advice, NS has decided to cancel the proposed ban on Segways – partly because the Segway is a brand name and is no longer produced – and to allow scooters and e-scooters if they meet the conditions for hand luggage. NS is also making it clearer where a folding bicycle may be placed on the train. For example, this should not block the walkway or a seat and should be placed in a luggage area where possible. The intended maximum height of 80 cm for folding bicycles will be maintained. Finally, the extension of the period in the summer during which bicycles are not allowed on the intercity to Brussels has been cancelled. In 2024, this period will be limited to July and August.

NS does not accept the advice to continue allowing tandems and recumbent bicycles on the train. The argument for this is that the available bicycle spaces in a number of train types are too small for this type of bicycle, which means there is less room for other bicycles and the longer bicycles can block the passage. There will still be room on the train for tricycles that are used as aids, but in a place with priority for wheelchairs and therefore not in a bicycle space.

NS’s full response can be read via the Locov website.

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