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I rode one of those Lime scooters on both the sidewalk and on the road, with myself and two-up, and I did not have very good control of it yet I could still cruise around in some fashion.

I think that's where the danger lies; being mobile without very good control. To be fair to scooter riders, a collision with another person (I purposely rammed my girlfriend on one) just doesn't feel very dangerous; it's more akin to a Chihuahua biting your ankles. It's likely to hurt while not being life-threatening.

In contrast, being rammed by a car at 35 mph, especially with by a light truck with bullhorns specifically designed to kill or injure pedestrians, feels far more serious. If cities were really concerned with public safety then they would separate autos from pedestrians and bicyclists.

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1 hour ago, LanghamP said:

I think that's where the danger lies; being mobile without very good control.

This is the other thing I think might be reasonably: some sort of "driver's test" certification before one can ride these things in public places.

 

1 hour ago, LanghamP said:

I purposely rammed my girlfriend on one

I'm going to go ahead and assume you have a different girlfriend now.

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3 hours ago, LanghamP said:

...

In contrast, being rammed by a car at 35 mph, especially with by a light truck with bullhorns specifically designed to kill or injure pedestrians, feels far more serious. If cities were really concerned with public safety then they would separate autos from pedestrians and bicyclists.

Yes...F=MA. It depends on the weight of the rider! 

As for control, that is my #1 issue with all these new fangled machine coming out. It is all about wheel base. No 3" scooter wheel is going to compete with 14,16 or 18 (or more) wheel size like our EUC's have.

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This is what a car-centric culture does to transportation that isn't autos.

http://amp.newsobserver.com/news/local/article221200415.html

$300 per scooter per year is probably more than what the companies pay for a scooter. Therefore I propose a tax of 100% on all autos in the city of Raleigh, to be capped at 500 units per manufacturer.

That'd be just about fair.

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article220091195.html

This article mentions 16 ems calls due to scooter accidents. Meanwhile 79 people were killed by autos (ahem, drivers of autos) in 2016.

Drivers need to get better training, have reflective paint of their vehicles, have no radios or cell phone usage, and wear helmets.

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28 minutes ago, LanghamP said:

This article mentions 16 ems calls due to scooter accidents.

And how many of these were really car accidents because a car was involved (and more likely than not the guilty party)? "Scooter accidents" my ass.

Couldn't agree more with your post. These days (also with the ridiculous situation in Germany) I'm getting more and more incited to start throwing bricks at car windshields from some highway bridge:eff0541f4a:

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Your all getting emotional like this is anything more than the media finding an angle to get readers to read stories on, in fact your giving them what they want yourselves.

Quit listening to the noise and just enjoy boys!  The sun is on its way (here in NZ at least) and hopefully i can get my hands on my EUC this month :D 

Good times!

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I was in San Diego recently they were every type of rental possible on every street corner, there was even a lime scooter at the end of a long public dock sitting there where they're not posed to be, didn't use one of them because I took my Segway Mini... Personally I wouldn't use any of them besides maybe a bike... Cars are overbuilt over-engineered 2-ton one person vehicles...🖕

Edited by MetricUSA
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Great article. My takeaway though is how much money these scooter companies are making off this right now. They are in high risk with repairs, recharging and dealing with city ordinances. But $$ wise..they are racking it in.

 

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5 hours ago, Thai-lad said:

A detailed look at the benefits of adapting cities to e-scooters...

https://www.wired.com/story/e-scooter-micromobility-infographics-cost-emissions/amp

  Nice article but not very honest when it comes to build emissions. You would have to build 20 scooters to replace one car. Most cars are still in great shape a 100,000 miles. (I have two cars with over 300,000 miles) I am guessing that an electric scooter with 5,000 miles is about equal to a car with 100,000 miles. When you take into consideration that many cars have several passengers the numbers change quickly. (just saying) 

  I would love to see bike paths in the US like they have in the Netherlands! 

 

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I remember seeing several times over a long period that the average car, at least in Los Angeles, carries less than two passengers.

Seems logical to me.  Lots of single people going to work, and even married people often don't work in the same place or have the freedom not to have two cars.

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33 minutes ago, Dingfelder said:

I remember seeing several times over a long period that the average car, at least in Los Angeles, carries less than two passengers.

Seems logical to me.  Lots of single people going to work, and even married people often don't work in the same place or have the freedom not to have two cars.

   When I hear statistics like that I have to assume the average car has 1.97 people in it.   I love the idea of using other modes of transportation. I am very jealous when I watch the "biking in the Netherlands" videos.  

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6 hours ago, RockyTop said:

  Nice article but not very honest when it comes to build emissions. You would have to build 20 scooters to replace one car. Most cars are still in great shape a 100,000 miles. (I have two cars with over 300,000 miles) I am guessing that an electric scooter with 5,000 miles is about equal to a car with 100,000 miles. When you take into consideration that many cars have several passengers the numbers change quickly. (just saying) 

  I would love to see bike paths in the US like they have in the Netherlands! 

 

Mileage is not the point.  Cars are routinely used to travel longer distances than their daily commute which skews that number.  Only daily commuter miles and local errands are going to be substituted by a PEV.  

More to the point is how often new car buyers replace their vehicles, every 6 years is what I've read.  Average private  PEV owners? No hard data, but a reasonable guess would be at most once a year? How long do cars typically last? 11 - 12 years? A PEV? 2 or 3 years? 

Add to the typical car the cost of the recommended maintenance schedule as per the owners manual, vs PEV only new tires and/or inner tubes. 

I would say that 3 to 6 PEVs to replace one car is a more appropriate number.

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6 hours ago, RockyTop said:

  Nice article but not very honest when it comes to build emissions. You would have to build 20 scooters to replace one car. Most cars are still in great shape a 100,000 miles. (I have two cars with over 300,000 miles) I am guessing that an electric scooter with 5,000 miles is about equal to a car with 100,000 miles. When you take into consideration that many cars have several passengers the numbers change quickly. (just saying) 

  I would love to see bike paths in the US like they have in the Netherlands! 

 

The Wired article is stupid because it ignores a major, and perhaps primary, reason why people drive cars...safety.

Basically, an automobile can safely ram anything below its weight class while being vulnerable to anything above it. 

However, when you say scooters replacing cars, it will probably be because we have no choice. That is, building and maintaining roads for our suburban sprawl has made almost all US cities insolvent.

https://www.strongtowns.org/journal/2018/8/22/the-more-we-grow-the-poorer-we-become

And they've been insolvent for quite some time, with neither property tax nor DMV auto taxes having even a prayer of paying for road based infrastructure. Road construction and maintenance is almost entirely built using public debt, with only about 10% covered by taxes. We know we're in lala land when it's cheaper to build new roads using federal money than to maintain existing roads.

In short, the Wired article is stupid because it ignores the inevitable scenario of why we'll go to scooters; our cities won't be able to afford cars. Yes, we have reached the point where we drive around un finances cars on roads built using insolvent public debt. That can't end well.

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7 hours ago, LanghamP said:

In short, the Wired article is stupid because it ignores the inevitable scenario of why we'll go to scooters; our cities won't be able to afford cars. Yes, we have reached the point where we drive around un finances cars on roads built using insolvent public debt. That can't end well.

   Agreed,........  You make me read more articles than all other members combined. 

   Some cities do better than others. The biggest problem that I see is that the government borrows money to revitalize a dead or dying city.  This goes against the market and the interest of the people as a whole. Cities die because of poor choices. If a city is dying there is a reason and throwing money at it without fixing the problem does not help. 

  Cities have business that need customers. Many of the things cities do run customers off. Examples include: Difficult roads, one way streets, lack of access, no parking, hateful and spiteful law enforcement and security guards, uninviting sidewalks. I see places that I would stop at if I did not have to spend 10 minutes trying to find a parking spot then paying $5 dollars to park and having to walk 5 minutes back to the store.

   I think that PEVs and better sidewalks could help with this. I drive an average of 200 miles a day. (150 mile radius of my house) When I get to a city I gladly switch to a PEV. I only get 5 miles a day on the EUC but I am guessing that it eliminates at least 10 miles of automotive usage. With the one way roads and limited parking I have to circle not one but several blocks multiple times to find a place to park. I would gladly park a mile or more away and ride a PEV for local use.

  

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27 minutes ago, RockyTop said:

I see places that I would stop at if I did not have to spend 10 minutes trying to find a parking spot then paying $5 dollars to park and having to walk 5 minutes back to the store.

It is the cost of free parking that is a major driver of city insolvency. 

In addition, cars searching for parking are estimated to cause about 1/3 of city traffic jams.

https://fee.org/articles/parking-regulations-cause-traffic-congestion-but-the-market-can-help/

Cities in the US list their roads, streets, and plumbing as assets instead of liabilities as they should be, that is, they measure their wealth by putting these items in the asset column when they should be properly classified as sunk cost with an ongoing liability for their maintenance. 

For example, the city builds parking lots but the cost of the parking lot is more than any income that can be derived from it. Another example is a road listed as an asset; since the road is free to use yet requires maintenance via property taxes that doesn't cover its cost, then it should properly be listed as a liability.

Where it gets more interesting is looking at which city blocks generate more revenue than costs; in every city in the US the compact inner city blocks generate money while all the suburbs cost more than they bring in.

To put it another way, the suburbs are subsidized by the inner city and the reason is simple and straightforward: land use policy requiring large parking lots don't generate income.

If you add up the taxes raised by blocks, you'll get a method that looks like this.

https://www.strongtowns.org/journal/2018/10/19/value-per-acre-analysis-a-how-to-for-beginners

In reality, the above link is somewhat useless because big box stores only build when they get subsidies from the local government, and like feeding locusts they abandon the area when those subsidies run out. Strip mall buildings are built to only last 12 or so years; we are in the absurd situation whereby these buildings are built on publically financed infrastructure, with giant parking lots that don't get used most of the time, and are made to only last a dozen years. Abandoning the area isn't an unfortunate consequence of economic downturns; it's a vital and viable business model. Still think that infrastructure the abandoned mall should be listed as an asset?

Just how much parking would satisfy you? Go to google maps and show your city using satellite view. Now count up the vast amounts parking in your town. Parking is the dominant feature of any north american city.

In short, most cities think like you. "I'm always looking for parking, therefore if I build more parking then my city will be a better place, so let's build more parking." 

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Well, there are always trade-offs and contradictions, and I see at least one of them there.  If a third of city traffic problems are caused by people looking for parking, then more parking would certainly help that.  In Los Angeles, people often avoid going places simply because the parking is such a nightmare.  And conversely, I have been among those saying one of the reasons they do go to a particular mall or movie complex, for example, is that because parking is easy and/or cheaper, but perhaps especially easy.   Nobody wants to spend half an hour looking for parking, or half an hour choking on parking lot smoke trying to get out ... especially after a 15 minute or more walk to get to your car in the first place.  Especially in bad weather. You only do it when better alternatives don't exist.  

And if you don't shop someplace -- or even decide to work in some area! -- because parking is so miserable, that's fewer tax dollars in sales and income tax for the city/state etc.  Whether it evens out cost-wise for the govt entities, I don't know.  But traffic and parking problems were close to a misery in many parts of Los Angeles and Orange County when I lived there, and they've rapidly gotten worse since then.

Also, re a major reason people drive cars, well, there are so many, but let's not forget weather.  A scooter doesn't protect you from that; it exposes it to you and makes it even worse with wind chill.

Also, keeping cars 11 or 12 years, as a poster above talked about, is too long for the average person, I believe.  Things start to break down and sometimes become quite expensive before that -- rubber and hoses of all types, which feeds into problems with electrical and other systems getting exposed to the elements, etc.  I remember a tiny length of hose went bad on my car and they wanted to charge me literally thousands of dollars to replace it.  I finally had to get it custom manufactured for $400 instead.  That came out to about $100/inch, if I recall correctly.

But many people just like to change cars, and many at least here in America have latched onto the leasing concept, and don't really own their cars at all.  They just have them short-term.

Edited by Dingfelder

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3 hours ago, Dingfelder said:

Well, there are always trade-offs and contradictions, and I see at least one of them there.  If a third of city traffic problems are caused by people looking for parking, then more parking would certainly help that.  In Los Angeles, people often avoid going places simply because the parking is such a nightmare.  And conversely, I have been among those saying one of the reasons they do go to a particular mall or movie complex, for example, is that because parking is easy and/or cheaper, but perhaps especially easy.   Nobody wants to spend half an hour looking for parking, or half an hour choking on parking lot smoke trying to get out ... especially after a 15 minute or more walk to get to your car in the first place.  Especially in bad weather. You only do it when better alternatives don't exist.  

And if you don't shop someplace -- or even decide to work in some area! -- because parking is so miserable, that's fewer tax dollars in sales and income tax for the city/state etc.  Whether it evens out cost-wise for the govt entities, I don't know.  But traffic and parking problems were close to a misery in many parts of Los Angeles and Orange County when I lived there, and they've rapidly gotten worse since then.

I wouldn't worry about LA because the city is insolvent. Its only outcome is junk bonds and depopulation ala Detroit. By any measure LA has the most traffic jams.

Add parking and you have to add roads.

https://la.streetsblog.org/2015/12/01/18-6-million-spaces-and-still-rising-study-puts-l-a-parking-in-perspective/

This is what LA parking looks like. Would you like to add more parking?

https://usa.streetsblog.org/2016/01/05/visualizing-las-18-6-million-parking-spaces-as-one-enormous-blob/

Unfortunately the real problem is stone simple and therefore is intractable. There's no wiggle room for effeciencies. 

The taxes raised from a city block with parking is less than the cost required by the city to maintain it.

Adding more city blocks aggravates the problem. Since large shipping warehouses don't pay taxes, or more accurately receive local government subsidies, it's clear city blocks are unsustainable without bonds, and as a city grows it eventually adds junk bonds until it gets rid of minimum parking requirements.

Automobile culture requires massive cash. It's all loaned money, from the car loan to borrowed money to pay for the construction and maintenance of roads and parking. This isn't a problem that LA can solve; it's a predictament that has an outcome.

That's why LA or any city is insane to ban scooters. Take a few city blocks, remove the parking lots and allow taxable housing, and I guarantee that area will bring in money instead of losing money.

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7 minutes ago, LanghamP said:

I wouldn't worry about LA because the city is insolvent. Its only outcome is junk bonds and depopulation ala Detroit. By any measure LA has the most traffic jams.

Add parking and you have to add roads.

https://la.streetsblog.org/2015/12/01/18-6-million-spaces-and-still-rising-study-puts-l-a-parking-in-perspective/

This is what LA parking looks like. Would you like to add more parking?

https://usa.streetsblog.org/2016/01/05/visualizing-las-18-6-million-parking-spaces-as-one-enormous-blob/

Unfortunately the real problem is stone simple and therefore is intractable. There's no wiggle room for effeciencies. 

The taxes raised from a city block with parking is less than the cost required by the city to maintain it.

Adding more city blocks aggravates the problem. Since large shipping warehouses don't pay taxes, or more accurately receive local government subsidies, it's clear city blocks are unsustainable without bonds, and as a city grows it eventually adds junk bonds until it gets rid of minimum parking requirements.

Automobile culture requires massive cash. It's all loaned money, from the car loan to borrowed money to pay for the construction and maintenance of roads and parking. This isn't a problem that LA can solve; it's a predictament that has an outcome.

That's why LA or any city is insane to ban scooters. Take a few city blocks, remove the parking lots and allow taxable housing, and I guarantee that area will bring in money instead of losing money.

I just bought a new car (it's been 15-years since our last car). Our old 'beater' car had a yearly license plate renewal fee of ~$250. The new car? $700 per year.

One wonders where all the money goes in California - oh yeah, I forgot, the bullet train to nowhere.

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