Tucson council to continue e-scooter program
TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Not even three months have passed since e-scooters rolled their way into Tucson.
They've given riders like David McGee an easy and enjoyable ride.
“Makes me feel like I’m a little kid again riding the scooter around,” Magee said. “They’re faster than walking and a lot cheaper than getting an Uber.”
But at what cost?
Some Fourth Avenue business owners like Martin Fontes, who owns Martin’s Comida, had some passionate words on the matter.
“I think very few people use them for what they’re worth,” Fontes said. “You see them doing crazy maneuvers that even bicyclists don’t even do.”
From inside his restaurant, Fontes cooks up some of his special Mexican entrees.
But he said what he’s witnessed these scooter riders do from his shop here on Fourth Avenue has been a recipe for disaster.
"People have their couple of drinks," Fontes said. "Then they get brave and think hey let's ride to the next bar."
He and many others have noticed people riding two to a scooter, without a helmet and later dumping the scooters in the middle of the sidewalk.
All things that aren't supposed to happen.
That’s why the Historic Fourth Avenue Coalition and two neighborhood associations wrote to city council and asked for more regulations.
Council member Steve Kozachik proposed the scooter pilot program be cancelled as soon as possible. Though no one else on the Tucson city council seemed to agree.
Tucson council members decided Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019 that the city would continue to study and discuss the issue over the next thirty days. They hope to find ways to better enforce existing rules and provide proper education.
Geo-fencing will be provided around major events like the Fourth Avenue Street Fair, which prohibits riders from entering the highly-trafficked area.
One of the scooter companies called Bird launched a new program where users can take a selfie wearing their helmet after they’re done and get some money taken off their ride.
These are a couple of the ways this company is working to enforce safety with the city.
Razor, another scooter company in town, has also started a petition on its website, which urges people to sign to keep scooters in Tucson.
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