For Ben Everhart and his wife Tina – whose 8 months pregnant – walking at the intersection of 3rd Street and Fairfax Avenue near the Farmers Market means dodging electric scooters.
“They’re basically mini motorcycles on the sidewalk,” Ben Everhart said. “We’re putting these things on the street, and no one is holding them accountable.”
Companies have deposited thousands of e-scooters on city sidewalks. For some, they offer an alternative to driving – a convenient way to get around.
In Los Angeles, it is legal to rent and ride one – with certain rules – including no riding on the sidewalk.
“If they’re on the street, which is legally where they’re supposed to be, it’s more dangerous for the rider, and we’ve had people fall off and get hit,” LA City Councilman Paul Koretz said. “We’ve had people fall off now and get killed, so I’m not sure there’s a safe way to use these.”
Koretz wanted a ban on e-scooters in the city.
Since that didn’t happen, he says he’s now working with LAPD to try to make it safe. He says people can expect to see stricter enforcement beginning in few weeks.
“I think we need to do some enforcement to let people know this isn’t something they can get away with legally,” Koretz said. “If you’re on the sidewalk you could get a moving violation.”
Koretz said a citation could add up to several hundred dollars.
In a statement, Lime said:
“The safety of our riders and the entire Los Angeles community is paramount, and that includes ensuring our scooters are well maintained and properly parked throughout the city.”
Bird said they have a service called “community mode” which allows people to report problems related to any of their e-scooters.
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