SAN ANTONIO –
Many San Antonio residents, including city officials, were surprised to see several electric scooters installed up in various places around town without warning.
The scooters come from the company Bird, which is based out of California.
- Birds are available in downtown San Antonio, Southtown, Government Hill, Dignowity Hill and Harvard Place. As ridership grows, the company will expand its fleet to serve all of San Antonio’s residents and communities.
- Scooters help with "last mile" trips that are too long to walk but too short to drive.
- Birds are available in more than a dozen major cities nationwide, such as Austin, Atlanta, and Los Angeles.
- An app is available for the scooters, which lists instructions on how to use the scooters, as well as rules for use.
- People are not allowed to ride or park the scooters at the Alamo or on the River Walk.
- Riders must be 18 years or older to use the scooters.
- Riders must wear a helmet if they are 21 years or younger.
- Riders must have a valid driver’s license.
- Other cities have had issues with the scooters such as people violating the rules or abusing the scooters.
- The company says it plans to regulate the scooters by means of their Save Our Sidewalks Pledge.
What representatives from Bird are saying about the scooters:
“While we've had very few problems, we thoroughly investigate any reports of abuse, deactivate users when necessary, and are continually working to provide consumers with an enjoyable ride.”
What representatives from the San Antonio Center City Development and Operations Department are saying:
"The City is working with dockless stakeholders to create a comprehensive dockless vehicle pilot program to clarify regulations and safety recommendations for all providers. Although Bird Scooters did not reach out to the City prior to launching their services in San Antonio, we have since contacted them to be a part of our stakeholder engagement process moving forward. Our recommendations will be presented to City Council later this year and we hope to strike a balance with these innovative transportation solutions and the safety of our residents and visitors on the public rights-of-way. We ask that riders avoid placing the scooters anywhere that would block or obstruct the sidewalk or street. Riders are also asked to follow all posted street signs and exercise caution. Riders are asked to obey all traffic regulations and follow posted regulations for similar vehicles such as bicycles, rollerblades/skates, skateboards, etc."