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Home / Business / Electric scooters appear in Somerville and Cambridge without the city officials knowing

Electric scooters appear in Somerville and Cambridge without the city officials knowing









The "birds" have emigrated to the Boston area.

While there are many ways to share bicycles, there are Blue Bikes, Ofos and Ant bikes in and around the city, a new way of transporting just onto the streets.

On Friday, the electric scooter-sharing company Bird discretely built its nest in Cambridge and Somerville, a fleet of dockless scooters with no knowledge of city officials rollout.

"Birds are now available … and as the number of passengers increases, we will adjust the number of available birds and areas according to the driver's needs," states a statement issued by the company last September in Santa Monica, California, was started.

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A bird speaker billed the scooters as a convenient way to overcome "those last mile" trips that are too long to run but too short to drive. [1

9659011] In order to drive a scooter, a user must first download the Bird app to their smartphone, and once the app is up and running, users enter their credit card information and GPS displays where the scooters are on a screen card. 19659005] To unlock a bird scooter, users need to scan their driver's license into the app and then agree to the company's terms of service – a small list of requirements, including a promise to wear a helmet, not "double-ride," and not on In addition, users must be 18 years or older to travel.

Once the electric scooter is reached, it is enough to push off three times and hold the throttle to get moving 1 for launch and then $ 0.15 for every minute after.

On Friday, when two Globe reporters tried the scooters and hit the Cen When people walked up and down the tral and Kendall squares, some people pointed or gawked at the rides. In one case, a person called "Oh, Birds!" As if they were familiar with the light scooters.

While the small black and silver scooters surprised residents of Cambridge and Somerville on Friday morning, they were also a shock to officials in both cities who said they were unaware of the launch.

Cambridge spokesman Lee Gianetti said Friday the city had "no contract or agreement with Bird" and "was unaware of the program's launch."

Jackie Rossetti, Somerville's deputy communications director, gave an almost identical statement. She added that there is no official policy for the scooters because they just appeared on Friday morning.

Rossetti went on to say that civil servants "generally have concerns about anything that could hinder access to public paths or sidewalks."

If that's the case with birdwatchers, she said, they'll be "from the Somerville Department of Public Works ".

Asked if Bird had contacted city officials about the rollout, a spokesperson said, "We've stretched out. I look forward to working closely with local leaders and officials."

The company said Cambridge and Somerville "Sharing Bird's vision of building communities with fewer cars, less traffic and reduced CO2 emissions," and the scooters will help achieve those goals. Bird Claims

Birds can fly up to a maximum of 15 miles per hour and last up to 15 miles per charge – but they can only be used during the day before sunset.

The company says Every night the scooters are picked up for storage, loading and all necessary repairs and taken off at 7 o'clock in the morning.

The company offers its customers the opportunity to become "a charger" in which you can charge the scooter at home or in the office and earn up to $ 100 a night.

Bird has landed in more than 20 cities nationwide, including Washington, DC, Dallas and Baltimore, but not every community has welcomed.

In Denver, tensions recently flared up between the company and city officials after the scooters arrived in the area. And in Nashville, city officials are considering rollovers on "Weeks of Controversy" scooters containing "scooter sweeps," according to Tennessean.com.

Two other electric scooter companies – Lime and Spin – have also expressed concern to Boston.com

Steve Annear can be reached at steve.annear@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @steveannear . Katie Camero can be reached at katie.camero@globe.com.


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