Then came the chargers, or the freelance contractors who work in the cutthroat industry of charging scooters with low batteries. (Lime calls its contractors “juicers, while Bird calls them “hunters”).
[City Councilor Pat] Davis said Albuquerque was mindful of the potential for an overcrowding of unused scooters -- something the city of Austin, Texas has been dealing with. As many as 15,000 scooters were licensed in Austin in January.
"We saw cities that didn't have rules for this, had big problems," Davis said.
To avoid the same scenario, Albuquerque is laying down some rules, requiring companies to pay a fee for every scooter on the road.
Davis said this gives companies the incentive to only put out as many as needed and prevents unused scooters from overcrowding areas.
"That means for a company, if it's not making money, they're going to take it off the road because they don't want to pay the city of Albuquerque for something that lays there that doesn't make money for them," Davis said.
All traffic laws will apply for scooter riders, according to Davis. They will be treated like bicyclists. Riders younger than 18, for example, must wear a helmet.
The scooter company must also, within 24 hours, remove any scooters that are parked in a way that blocks sidewalks, bike share stations, driveways, accessible ramps, bus stops or handicapped parking.
Companies must also have a local point-of-contact who can respond to requests or emergencies at any time.
In the midst of the scooter explosion, Bostian noticed that people were littering the hotel driveway with scooters, blocking guests from driving in and out. He’s tried asking riders to move the scooters elsewhere. About half have agreed. The other half threw f-bombs.
I wonder if there's been any research into the use cases for these scooters, because to me they seem like an alternative to walking, not driving.
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