In the summer of 2022, the city of St. Louis banned electric scooters, such as Bird and Lime, but we are now seeing their comeback after a trial weekend. Their demise in the city last year was due to the connection they had with large late-night gatherings of teenagers, that often led to higher amounts of disturbances and violence. Back in January of this year, St. Louis signed into accordance a new permit that would allow scooter and bike sharing companies to make a comeback in the city, but with more regulations and restrictions.
What exactly are these new electric scooter rules?
The Public Safety Director of St. Louis, Monte Chambers, announced the return of the electric scooters, starting with the trial run, and the regulations they would have to follow in order to stay in the city. For starters, any company that offered scooter or bike sharing had to cap speeds on their vehicles and limit the number of scooters in one area. They are also required to instate an ID verification, in which anyone wanting to access a ride on a scooter or bike would be required to provide identification to prove they are 18 or older.
Additionally, for the time being, rides for anyone are prohibited from 7pm to 7am.
After the trial weekend, in which companies must receive a permit with these new conditions before they could be back on the streets, only Bird relaunched in the area. Lime is expected to follow suit and receive a permit soon as well. During this trial run weekend, Bird was required to have employees on the streets to run tests and monitor the progress of the scooters and how well things stuck to the rules.
City officials gave a statement after the success of the weekend, announcing that 50 scooters were put out on the streets in the Downtown areas of the city with more spread throughout the rest of St. Louis. In total, approximately 163 rides were taken with the 50 downtown scooters and 997 were taken throughout the city in its entirety.
Overall, the relaunch of the electric scooter company was very successful and shows great promise for the future of scooter and bike sharing companies being back in St. Louis.