From Jeff Shiver, Atlanta car accident attorney of Shiver Hamilton.
Scooters became popular in Atlanta in the spring of 2017, and everyone has an opinion on them. Some praise them for clearing up the clogged streets of the city, while others see them as nuisances that clutter sidewalks and crowd pedestrians. In an attempt to prevent any more problems with the scooters, the Atlanta City Council has drafted new rules for them.
The rules dictate that the scooter companies renting the devices now obtain permits for their businesses. The permits cost a minimum of $12,000 annually, which allows the businesses a fleet of 500 scooters. Any additional scooter will cost an extra $50. If it is found a company is not abiding by the new policies, they will incur a maximum fine of $1,000 per day. In addition to these rules, Council also imposed a speed limit of 15 miles per hour on the vehicles.
Atlanta City Council has also stated that all scooters must be parked upright on the sidewalk, providing at least five feet of space to pedestrians. This rule stemmed from complaints that scooters were cluttering sidewalks, making it difficult for pedestrians to pass. Scooter operators were also known to drive recklessly and crash into pedestrians.
The city will hold the scooter companies, not the individuals that rent from them, responsible for complying with the new rules. More rules stated that the rental companies must inform their riders of safety tips, including the importance of wearing a helmet at all times and obeying local laws while on the scooter.
Electric scooters have certainly done some great things for the city. However, these steps taken by City Council were necessary to ensure that everyone is safe while getting around our beautiful city. Scooters may be much smaller than other vehicles, but they can still cause serious accidents with larger cars and in particular, pedestrians.
Scooters must now also be ridden only in the street, close to the right-hand side of the road, and this may be the biggest hurdle with the new rules. Some believe that until scooter riders feel safer sharing the road with cars and trucks, they will continue to clog the sidewalks and cause problems with pedestrians.
Jeff Shiver of Shiver Hamilton is a personal injury lawyer with experience handling cases involving car accidents, truck accidents, and negligent security. Shiver Hamilton has offices in Atlanta, Savannah, and St. Simons Island. For more information about Jeff Shiver and the Shiver Hamilton, visit their Facebook and LinkedIn.