Electric scooters have rolled into more than 100 cities worldwide, and many of the people riding them have ended up in the emergency room with serious injuries, still others have been killed.
With Summer officially here, the numbers will grow. Cities are continuing to grapple with how to manage the 2-wheeled vehicles that riders adore but motorists and pedestrians scorn.
There are no comprehensive statistics available, but a rough count by the AP of media reports turned up at least 11 electric scooter rider deaths in the US since the beginning of Y 2018.
Data on injuries or fatalities linked to scooters is hard to come by because the industry is so new.
Doctors studying the issue found many head injuries, and almost none of the injured riders wore helmets.
Paris authorities announced Thursday a ban on parking electric scooters on the pavement, in a new crackdown on the fashionable 2-wheeled contraptions as pedestrians complain of growing safety risks.
Scooters “must be left in parking spaces designated for cars and motorised two-wheel vehicles”, the city’s mayor Anne Hidalgo said in a press conference.
She also banned scooters from parks and gardens in a string of measures which will start coming into force from next month.
Apps such as Lime, Bolt, Wind and Flash,whose scooters have invaded streets in recent months should also cut speed limits to 20 km/h (12 mph) around the capital, or 8 km/h (5 mph) in pedestrian areas, Mayor Hidalgo said.
Around 20,000 electric scooters have appeared on the French capital’s streets since last year, causing tensions that have also been seen in cities worldwide from Madrid to Los Angeles.
Fans have embraced scooters as a quick and cheap way to get around, since the “dockless” devices are unlocked with a phone app and can be left anywhere when a ride is finished.
That is exactly the problem, critics say, pointing to scooters strewn across the city’s stately squares or abandoned in piles littering narrow sidewalks, to the bane of people hauling groceries or pushing prams.
Paris has already introduced fines of 135 euros ($150) for riding electric scooters on the pavement.
Watch out, they are everywhere