Alexandria, VA – Alexandria City Councilor Mo Seifeldein has had enough of the electric scooters, and has called for their suspension in the city’s dockless mobility program. There have been 11 e-scooter-related deaths nationwide, and Seifeldein said that the city should take measures to regulate the scooter program before an incident occurs.
“We want to avoid a 12th death from ever occurring in Alexandria, because that is not something I can live with,” Seifeldein told The Zebra. “My main concern is the safety and equity and even if we do have a memorandum of understanding, the logistics of it will be a nightmare for the police, for the courts. It’s not realistic to take away resources from the police to monitor scooter riders.”
City Council will look at the scooter pilot program in September. Seifeldein is currently looking for support from his colleagues to have the program suspended before September meeting, since Council will soon go on its summer break.
The city issued $5,000 individual permits to Lime, Lyft, Jump (which operates e-bikes), Bird, Bolt, Skipand Spin to operate within the city, limiting the number of scooters from each company in the city to 200 e-scooters or e-bikes apiece. Users download the app, type in their credit or debit information, scan the bike with their phone and they’re off! Many companies (with the exception of Lyft and Bolt) require a driver’s license in order to ride.
Seifeldein said that average annual income for riders is $50,000, and that such a population is best represented in the city’s West End, where scooters are largely absent. Additionally, riders are not wearing helmets and are scooting around on sidewalks without public enforcement.
“This has resulted in the piling up of scooters on sidewalks which demonstrates an even greater risk and nuisance to pedestrians,” Seifeldein said. “Riders are also not wearing proper headgear when utilizing dockless scooter services.”