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Monday, September 24, 2018

Scootermania in Urban Areas

In May of this year I encountered my first experience with scooters being used in downtown areas of a city.  I was in Nashville, Tennessee and was surprised to see many people riding scooters near the downtown area.  Well, the scooter movement has moved further north in the Midwest. Downtown Indianapolis, Indiana is now in the throws of "scootermania".  While downtown this weekend a common sight was seeing a scooter parked along a sidewalk.

I am surprised that their is not more concern about what safety issues come up with allowing people to just pick up and start "driving" a scooter along streets, paths, and sidewalks.  Their is no requirement to prove you can "drive" a scooter without crashing into people, buildings, cars or other scooters.  People are not required to take a driver's test or a written test on the rules of driving a scooter.  No, you just pay and go.

What that means is that pedestrians, buses, and cars are dealing with unproven scooter drivers.  We are at their mercy and can only hope they know how to drive the scooter properly.  I recently saw a video of a scooter rider being hit by a truck as the truck was pulling out of a parking garage.  The scooter rider made no attempt to slow down as he approached the parking garage exit.  He assumed he had the right of way.  Even I as a pedestrian know to look out for cars exiting a parking garage.

But of course when profit is a factor common sense is forgotten.  Now I as a driver have to be concerned about looking out for scooter traffic when I drive downtown.  Just what I needed!  I would urge the "law makers" to consider requiring scooter drivers to be certified that they are qualified to drive in urban downtown traffic.  If not we will hear about more accidents and yes unfortunately someone will die in a vehicle vs scooter collision.  Lastly with winter approaching I hope the use of scooters is banned during wintry weather!