During the Covid19 social isolation period, all but essential workers are being discouraged from leaving their homes. Data from traditional sources can track the reduction in road traffic and public transport journeys. There is currently no equivalent single source of data on journeys taken by shared micromobility, a new and growing transport option.
Shared micromobility schemes are automatically a solo means of transport, offering automatic social isolation compared to buses, trains or taxis (assuming vehicles are cleaned between rides, or wipes or other preventative measures are made available to riders). Several operators are offering free rides to key workers (e.g. nurses, hospital and other care staff) to help keep them safe as they travel, but how much is the risk being reduced for them? How many riskier commuter miles (and time) of transport are avoided?
As we pass through the period of lockdown, and guidance eventually relaxes, allowing more people to travel, it will still be desirable to keep 2m social distancing and reduce personal interactions to a minimum. Reducing time in communal closed spaces while commuting will be key to avoiding infections in dense cities.
Data from the BMC Infectious Diseases journal shows that those using public transport during flu outbreaks were up to six times more likely to pick up an acute infection.
Commuters with long journeys, or who pass through busy stations or transport hubs are at most risk.
Shared micromobility schemes (such as bikes and scooters) can offer a safer commute than many other modes of transport. Increased use of shared micromobility can also lead to more space in the streets, allowing pedestrians to maintain 2m distance more easily too, while also reducing the load on, and increasing the space in public transport.
The lack of data on current usage could lead to missed opportunities in promoting safer modes of transport, leading to the risk of people using modes of transport that have a higher risk of infection. Without promoting safer modes of travel, potentially very large numbers of people in dense cities stand the chance of being infected in public transport during the post-lockdown period.
Anadue has developed a Location Intelligence solution that analyses journeys taken by shared micromobility schemes. This includes both docked and dockless formats of bike-sharing / scooter sharing. The platform is multi-vendor, supporting reports of overall supply and demand as well as a break-down by scheme. Insights from Anadue can ensure the migration to a post-Covid19 world is managed without a huge gap in the data available to decision-makers.
Pilots can be running within a few weeks of obtaining the agreement of shared mobility scheme operators to provide data, so well within the time frame of the Covid19 response planning.