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New Scooter Rules: No Sidewalks, No Speeding & More

Walker Evans Walker Evans New Scooter Rules: No Sidewalks, No Speeding & MorePhoto by Walker Evans.
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Just one week after the first round of scooter company regulations were established, Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther rolled out a second announcement today with rules aimed at users of these new vehicles. A statement from the Mayor’s office said that the new rules are aimed at ensuring a safe experience for riders, as well as the automobiles and pedestrians that interact with them.

The biggest change to ridership comes in the form of a sidewalk ban, noting that the scooters — as well as dockless bike rentals — can only be operated on city streets.

“In Columbus, we are excited about the expanding options to navigate our great city,” stated Ginther. “It’s our responsibility to both promote these mobility options and protect everyone sharing the road with bikes, e-bikes and e-scooters. Our proposed legislation and limited emergency rules are grounded in those goals.”

Additional proposed rules include:

  • Riders must be at least 16 years old. (Some companies state that riders must be 18 years old.)
  • A driver’s license is not required.
  • Helmets are required if the rider is under the age of 18.
  • While sidewalks are off limits, bike lanes and shared use paths (bike trails) are fair game.
  • Riders must park scooters and bikes on sidewalk, but can’t block pedestrian paths, bus stops or building entrances.
  • Vehicles designed for single riders should not be ridden by multiple riders.
  • Groups of riders cannot ride more than two side-by-side in a travel lane.
  • Riders are asked to keep both hands on the handlebars at all times (ie: no phones, no carrying bags.)
  • Headlights and red rear reflectors are required at night.
  • Speeds can’t exceed 20 miles per hour.
  • Don’t operate on streets with speed limits over 35 mph.

The proposed legislation will be presented to Columbus City Council this week, with temporary emergency rules in place to enforce the ridership of scooters and rental bikes off city sidewalks.

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