Powered by
Sponsored by

Why Ola is getting panned over Guwahati electric scooter accident

Ola Electric released a statement on the accident on April 22

ola electric scooter users Representational image | Ola Electric Facebook handle

Ola unveiled its electric scooter range on Independence Day last year amid much fanfare. However, the manufacturer has had to deal with issues of delay in supply and complaints of unsatisfactory performance.

But since last week, Ola is being criticised for a very different reason. Balwant Singh, a resident of Guwahati, had tweeted on April 15 that his son had met with an accident on an Ola S1 Pro “due to fault in regenerative braking where on a speed breaker, instead of slowing, the scooter accelerated, sending so much torque that he had an accident”.

The accident happened in late March. Balwant Singh tweeted on April 15 “The scooter went airborne crashing and skidding. My son was severely hospitalised on 26th March where he had fractures in left hand and 16 stitches in right hand due to fault in ola S1 Pro.”

Ola Electric released a statement on the scooter accident on April 22. The statement said “There is nothing wrong with the vehicle”, noting “the rider was over-speeding throughout the night and that he braked in panic, thereby losing control of the vehicle”.

Ola Electric shared data from the vehicle's sensors, which it receives in real time. Referring to graphs of speed, Ola Electric claimed the rider travelled at 115kmph on two occasions and all three brakes (front, rear and regenerative) were applied together, “likely due to an obstruction on the road”.

The use of real-time data from the vehicle upset many social media users who complained of an invasion of privacy by the company.

On April 23, Balwant Singh tweeted he had sent a notice to Ola Electric for sharing the real-time data. Balwant tweeted, “My notice to @OlaElectric to immediately take down my telemetry data which they have published in public without my consent violating privacy laws & the graphs whose authenticity has not been verified by me/ law agencies.” He warned he would take legal action against Bhavish Aggarwal, the CEO of Ola.

In addition to questions of privacy, Balwant Singh and some other users also expressed doubts about the veracity of the graphs given in the Ola Electric statement.

📣 The Week is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@TheWeekmagazine) and stay updated with the latest headlines