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Home / Business / San Francisco, LA and other cities are adding rules to contain e-scooters

San Francisco, LA and other cities are adding rules to contain e-scooters



The scooters arrived with vengeance – but cities like San Francisco are arguing. The city is forcing all scooters off the road as it implements a new vehicle approval program.

Beyond the Bay Area, other major cities such as Washington, D.C., and Austin saw herds of e-scooters – electronic, GPS-tracked transports that accelerate up to 15 miles per hour – arrived in recent months. Now they realize that something needs to be done before their communities are covered in e-scooters or before anyone is seriously injured.

The scooters are a particularly popular option for short trips. A network of contract workers is being paid to confiscate scooters, load them at home, and bring the juiced devices to the streets in the morning.

Despite a two-month delay, San Francisco has opted for a mischief approaching the companies that typically charge about $ 1

for unlocking the devices and 15 cents per minute for the ride. After unsuccessful efforts to reduce the large number of scooter company vehicles such as Lime, Spin and Bird, the city developed an approved pilot program.

The program announced on Thursday provides for companies to park scooters and have an operating license by 4 June. Any scooters lying around or being used will be confiscated and companies will be fined $ 100 per scooter per day. Companies that work without a license will be denied participation in the new approval program.

Permit applications opened Thursday and due June 7. Then the City Transport Authority will examine the applications and "determine which companies, if any, will receive a permit by the end of June". For a few weeks in June, the scooter sharing will allegedly come to a standstill.

The one-year pilot program requires companies to share data with the city, offer a low-income option, and educate drivers about safety rules for riding and parking the equipment. For the first half of the pilot, companies can have up to 1,250 scooters. If successful, this number will rise to 2,500 in the second half of the year.

Bird spokesman Kenneth Baer said in an e-mail statement that the company will apply for a permit. "Tens of thousands of San Franciscans have covered more than 100,000 miles on Birds in a short time, and the demand for a way to bypass San Francisco, which does not contribute to congestion or CO2 emissions, is clear and we look forward to a meeting in the next "He said."

Spin did not comment, except that the company will meet the deadline on June 4 and plans to apply for a permit.

Lime did not respond to a request for a comment on the new rules in San Francisco.

Lyft, the Ride Hailing service, is reported to seek approval in SF, which means that if it means partnering with a scooter company or building its own scooter unit, it's unclear Declined to comment.

San Francisco is not the only city that distracts from the battery-powered vehicles that drive into the city's streets (and sidewalks), and Austin has R's this month introduced for dockless vehicles, including e-scooters. By August 1, businesses need to equip scooters with haptic technology to warn users when they have parked properly – or to find a way to secure the scooters to a rack or rack. A new company, Goat, launched this week as a certified scooter company in Austin.

  The scooter stock company Goat works in Austin.

The scooter stock company Goat works in Austin.

Goat boss Michael Schramm is aboard the city to start with only 500 vehicles. In a telephone conversation he said, "If you set no boundaries, there is this absurd supersaturation problem." Instead of jumping in and drowning the market, he said his company had been waiting for the city to set regulations. He said cities are working to ensure that the new transportation option is properly implemented so that it does not become a situation in China. He is in favor of the rules – he said they are "city regulations that guarantee competition".

Within a day of starting, Schramm said he was blown away. "People love the scooters, they want the scooters, they want to ride the scooters," he said.

"People love scooters, they want scooters, they want scooters."

Los Angeles is also deep in the jerk of scooter mania. The scooter company Bird is based in Santa Monica and has released its flock for the first time in the city. Now the city council is cooking plans to limit the scooters. A planned plan for a committee meeting this week would require data reporting to the LA transit department, strict parking requirements in certain geo-fenced areas, and a maximum fleet size of 2,500. Additional scooters could be added if they work in "disadvantaged communities". Scooters are not allowed within 3 miles of downtown LA, where the city's bike-sharing program is based.

Atlanta is another city where e-scootering takes place. The city is also putting together new rules for controlling free-floating devices. It had suggested locking scooters to objects to keep them out of the way when parking and not using them.

All these e-scooters, which pile up and move into the cities, could boost actual demand. Nift, a local business platform for giving gifts to customers, interviewed 450 customers on scooter sharing. A little less than 25 percent of respondents said they wanted more scooters in their area, according to the poll released this week.

  Scooters have a bad reputation for being dangerous and messy.

Scooters have a bad reputation for being dangerous and messy.

About two-thirds of respondents said that they never plan to use e-scooters, while a third said they think they are dangerous. Another third thought the scooters were messy, blocking roads and sidewalks. People would rather take public transport, order a ride through an app, or use their bike or bike share or straight-up walk.

Insurance specialist and risk management specialist Thom Rickert said in a phone call that the influx of scooters should not be so. It's a surprise for cities, but "communities are being caught in a place they did not foresee. " This means that you must try to set guidelines, pilot programs, permits, and other frameworks to integrate the new transit option.

"Most communities want these platforms in their cities," he said, but they want companies to make sure the scooters are safe, accessible, organized and fair. If e-scooters become annoying rather than helping to move people, tolerance will collapse.

With two-wheeled vehicles becoming an anticipated mode of transportation, cities need to figure out how to stem them without stifling the new platforms. While that's clear, there are no compromises on e-scooters – and it's only the beginning.

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