After a night out in the city, you might think that renting an e-scooter is a safer and more cost-effective way for you to get home. If you’ve been enjoying a few drinks, however, this line of thinking could be dangerous. Driving a rental scooter while drunk is just as dangerous as getting behind the wheel while intoxicated.
Chicago is aiming to make transportation within the city easier. This summer, they will be introducing electric scooters, to see if they’re a viable transportation option for the citizens of Chicago. It will start on June 15 and continue until October 15. While the e-scooters are coming to some areas like Avondale, Austin, Pilsen, and South Lawndale, the scooters will not be available in the Loop or Lakefront communities.
This is because they’re testing a small, concentrated area to see how the electric rental scooters affect it. It’s part of former Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s mobility task force. Halsted Street, Irving Park Road, and Harlem Avenue will outline the area that will get the scooters. The electric scooters will operate similarly to Chicago’s bike sharing programs. You use an app to find and pay for a scooter and then take it to your destination.
Rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft have created an incredibly convenient way for people to get around in the “for-hire” transportation world. The rideshare application (“app”) almost instantly connects individuals to drivers. The app is simple to use, and has become a regular mode of transportation from millennials to baby-boomers.
To become a rideshare driver is simple. Typically, the drivers don’t have to meet the same licensing and inspection requirements that apply to the more traditional taxi and limousine services. Rideshare companies allow individuals from all walks of life to earn extra money utilizing their own vehicle through a very simple application process which typically does not include much, if any, background check. In cities where these options are available, taxi/limousine ridership has declined.
While these companies provide great, convenient services, the risk management, insurance and compliance issues that exist are in many instances unchartered territories. This is especially true when it comes to safety and insurance coverage (ie.) whether riders are “covered” and, if covered, to what extent coverage applies when they swipe their phone to get a ride.