Lime Electric Vehicles Responds to Complaint on Scooter Parking
by Larry Janezich
Posted October 26, 2022
On Monday, Hill East resident Mark Ugoretz – with support from ANC6A Transportation Committee Chair Maura Dundon – raised concerns regarding the parking for pickup of the company’s electric scooters in ways that disregard public safety. Late morning on Tuesday, Erika Duthely, Director of Government Relations at Lime, issued following statement:
“Lime takes pride in providing top quality service to the District and its residents and will immediately rectify this issue moving forward. We thank the community members for bringing it to our attention and will work with our city and community partners as we always do to keep improving our service. We train our team to deploy our vehicles in the best spots for all residents, out of the way of pedestrians and especially out of accessible rights of way, and we will double down to ensure that model is observed moving forward.”
The company’s communication representative added that they would appreciate the statement being added to the CHC story.
The other issue which remains unaddressed is the lack of enforcement of scooter parking regulations which apply to users – DDOT’s purview. That concern may not receive such a prompt response. DDOT has long been viewed my some ANCs as one of the agencies least responsive to community, resident, and ANC concerns. Many of those complaints concern lack of parking enforcement: parking in bike lanes, parking in bus lanes, parking in crosswalks, double parking of delivery trucks, parking in alleys, and parking for construction workers. All of these come up regularly in ANC meetings with DDOT officials. The DDOT default position is to pledge to respond to public complaints, but as many ANC commissioners who have tried doing just that can testify this has been an empty promise. This is a big issue and one not confined to Capitol Hill. Its resolution will require a concerted city-wide effort to exert community pressure on DDOT.
(On a related matter, a new parking issue will be aired on Friday, when the City Council Transportation and Environment Committee will hold a hearing to make Residential Parking Permits specific to an ANC rather than to a Ward. For more on that, go to the committee’s schedule here: https://bit.ly/3SFwqOP )
9 responses to “Lime Electric Vehicles Responds to Complaint on Scooter Parking”
I agree this is an issue but there are VERY FEW places to lock up scooters, and bikes (personal or shared) in most parts of Capitol Hill
There are several parking signs and lamp posts on every street and block. It’s not a burden. In fact, it’s easier to secure a scooter or bicycle to a post than it is to find a parking spot for a car.
It’s fairly clear that the Department of Transportation is not up to the job of enforcing the requirement that scooters be placed specifically near the curb and secured to a pole. A better enforcement scheme would be to authorize the police to pick up the scooter, note the serial or registration number, levy a fine against the company, and return the scooter when the fine was paid. Since the scooter company has the last user’s credit card information, they could easily charge the fine against the last driver who left the scooter so as to impair pedestrians.
DDOT enforcement is an anomaly. DDOT does not fine General Motors or Ford or Toyota when a significant number of those cars are parked illegally or injure moving violation tickets. It’s clearly more reasonable to effectively fine the violator using the scooter or bicycle company as a middleman to collect. Nor is it an unreasonable burden on the scooter or bicycle company since they are using city property to make their product available to customers.
Clearly, this scheme is not at all inconsistent with the responsibilities and accountability levied on motorists who incur parking and moving violation tickets.
Where LIME could have left the scooters (not locked up) instead of leaving them right in the middle of the ramp of the island of the crosswalk –> is the space in the cross hatched between the curb and the roadway, behind the flexiposts –> https://email@example.com,-76.991654,3a,75y,220.94h,90t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1s87RdmU0sIVJOt6feDyYlWQ!2e0!6shttps:%2F%2Fstreetviewpixels-pa.googleapis.com%2Fv1%2Fthumbnail%3Fpanoid%3D87RdmU0sIVJOt6feDyYlWQ%26cb_client%3Dmaps_sv.tactile.gps%26w%3D203%26h%3D100%26yaw%3D214.02943%26pitch%3D0%26thumbfov%3D100!7i16384!8i8192
Also, Maura Dundon is not a commissioner. She is the Chair of the ANC6A Transportation and Public Space Committee.
Tru-nuff. But issue isn’t where they might have placed them. The placement across the pedestrian-way was intentional and repeated in the ramp in front of Wine & Butter. In addition scooters were placed earlier in the month across the sidewalk in the 1100 block of E. Cap. NE so as to block pedestrian traffic on the sidewalk when they could easily have been placed near the curb, and, on another occasion across the pedestrian handicapped ramp. Malum in se et prohibitatum.
The following is my Letter to the Editor of the Washington Post that was published by the Post on December 21, 2021; The Dec. 26 Commuter article “Urban planner sees a future for shared scooters, bikes” recognized that there are valid complaints about scooters obstructing pedestrian traffic on sidewalks, “particularly for people in wheelchairs.” Electric scooters are a danger to a wide range of people with disabilities, not just those “in wheelchairs.” They are a particular danger to those with low vision and the blind in how they continue to be parked and ridden illegally on D.C. sidewalks. They are a constant threat to seniors, many of whom do not have the visual, hearing or physical mobility of the vast majority of e-scooter users. Any casual observation of those users yields only one obvious conclusion: They are ridden overwhelmingly by the young and able-bodied, and represent a clear and present danger to people with disabilities and seniors.
There was a scooter parked five feet in front of the Eastern Market Metro down escalator at 7:30 AM Monday. Probably left there by a truly inconsiderate rider.
The council has the power to decrease the number of scooters they allow in the city. Perhaps that will the attention from Lime, and help with this problem.
Thanks Judith. I think that’s an important point. Lincoln Park has zero bike racks come to think about it!! And with Wine and Butter so popular now, that corner is even more of an attraction. Please consider contacting your ANC Commissioner.
In this instance the scooters were deliberately placed by someone likely recharging, but there are MANY other instances where users leave them in randomly awful places which present safety hazards to pedestrians. Scooters have also been locked to other bikes, forcing the bike owner to sign up and initiate a transaction because the company has no recourse for this scenario.