Will the “Micromobility” Movement’s Introduction to the City Cause More Harm than Good?
On August 17, 2021, 3000 scooters were distributed across the Bronx by Lime, Bird, and VeoRide as part of a year-long pilot phase in the introduction of scooter sharing in New York City. The pilot phase is confined to the east Bronx, but may expand after the one year permit has passed if the New York Department of Transportation decides to renew it.
With each ride estimated to cost customers around $5, proponents of e-scooter sharing argue that it is an affordable, eco-friendly way for New Yorkers to get around the city. The companies behind the scooter sharing technology claim to have installed extensive safety measures into the cloud-controlled vehicles.
“The launch of this pilot program is very exciting. It’s a great way to get around this area of the Bronx which is underserved by mass transit. People need to start off slow until they get the hang of riding in the street.
With the increase in e-scooters, however, has come an increase in injuries. You should absolutely wear a helmet when you are out riding. There are many companies making collapsible and folding helmets that you can carry in your backpack and take with you when you leave the house so you’re always ready for a safe ride.
Also, the NYC Department of Transportation is testing the ways they are going to manage the sidewalk clutter of so many new micromobility devices in the area. One strategy they have implemented is painting dedicated “parking corrals” on the sidewalks. One thing the City does not need, is e-scooters lying about making the sidewalks a hazard.” NYC Electric Bike Injury Lawyer https://hermannyc.com/nyc-bike-injury-lawyer/
NYC Resident Debbie Walters
“I don’t mind the scooters, when they stay in the street. I’ve had a few close calls crossing NYC bike and scooter lanes where the scooters and bicycles coexist. The lanes are dedicated one way and without fail some yahoo is going the wrong way down the bike lane. I’ve had to change my behavior completely or face serious injury by getting into a collision with a scooter or e-bike.
E-bikes, scooters and bicycles, don’t require registration, but can travel as fast, if not faster than some mopeds which do require licenses, something is just not right with that logic. If you need a license to operate a moped then it should be based on how fast the scooter or e-bike can travel, hopefully law enforcement will be handing out tickets.
The activity seems really pleasurable, but the e-bikes are really difficult to gage, because of their peddle assist capability, they seem to be traveling so damn fast that someone is going to get hurt, especially when some riders go without helmets,”
On the other hand, the addition of e-scooters to the high foot traffic throughout the five boroughs puts New York pedestrians at an even greater risk for serious injury.
Up until 2020, electric scooters were prohibited by local city ordinances. Since their legalization, there have been 575 accidents involving privately owned e-scooters in New York City. This is significantly higher than most cities with e-scooter access; in 2019, Chicago and Miami had 192 and 129 accidents involving e-scooters, respectively. Earlier this summer, actress Lisa Bane was struck by an e-scooter rider who reportedly ran a red light; the Gone Girl star died after spending ten days in the hospital in critical condition.
Additionally, the hundreds of miles of unprotected bike lanes in New York City put cyclists and now e-scooter riders at risk for potentially fatal collisions with motor vehicles.