Scooters To Be Removed From Dallas Streets By Friday
Due to widespread complaints, beginning Wednesday, September 3rd, the Dallas Transportation Department has suspended the city’s scooter program.
The Dallas Observer reports that Scooter operators were told to cease operations immediately and to have the vehicles off Dallas Streets by close of business on Friday, September 4th.
Transportation Director Mike Rogers issued a press release concerning Dallas’ decision to remove the scooters. “We have received complaints about scooters and would like to make substantial changes to the scooter program,” Rogers said, “The changes will include public safety considerations so that the city may have safe modes of alternative transportation.”
City officials said that the Dallas Police Department was also consulted about the decision.
Among the chief complaints were issues concerning those using the scooters were not following the city’s safety ordinances concerning the vehicles, late-night gatherings, and the city’s teen curfew. Since the scooters became available in Dallas, there have been hundreds of emergency room visits from riders and others hurt in connection to the vehicles.
Mayor Pro Tem Adam Medrano also issued a statement saying that he had been working on getting the scooters at least temporarily removed in the areas of Deep Ellum and the Central Business District.
According to Nico Probst, the director of government relations for Lime, one of the operators of scooters within metro Dallas, spoke to members of the media about the recent Dallas ban.
“We’re seeing that COVID-19 is causing people to rethink how they get around and that scooters are a socially distant, open-air alternative to transit and driving,” Probst said. ” We hope this pause in service is as brief as possible so that Dallas residents can continue relying on our services.”
Dallas’ city officials have had a tumultuous relationship with scooter companies such as Lime, Ojo, and Uber. During a recent City Council meeting, a contractor for one of the scooter operators, Shaun Gaston, told council members that the decision to remove scooters from the street essentially ignores the needs of those involved. “Removing the scooters isn’t treating the problem,” Gaston said. “It’s only treating the symptoms.”
Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson only found out about the Transportation Department’s decision when it was announced. Surprised by the move, Johnson told reporters that the City Council had voted to keep the scooters as recently as March. “We should discuss it ASAP,” Johnson said.