The Chainlink

Dear Seasoned Chicago Cyclists,
Please try to impart the patience and compassion you would have for a first time bike commuter. Having experienced the roll out in DC and already had one scooter fatality, there's definitely a concern about safety. Basically, scooter users will likely be pedestrians (not cyclists) turned scooter riders so they won't know the ins and outs like a seasoned cyclist. Think first time Divvy user. So yes, you'll see them on the sidewalks (even though they aren't supposed to), bike lanes, and streets. Lots of patience will be necessary. While scooters can be a good addition to the non-car commuter, they do pose risks to themselves (mostly) and other vulnerable users of the roads.

Here's an article with the details of the scooter roll-out:

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Yeah, the city's motives are multifaceted, eg, tax revenue.

And yet they don't ticket cars in the bike lane. argh.

This is truly one of the greater mysteries of Chicago street management. If the scooters can help fix that disconnect, that would indeed be a blow for the greater good.

I've looked at the Rules for scooter use in Chicago and I'm concerned that the City is protecting itself at the expense of riders.  Scooters are really fun and may help reduce auto dependence but I fear they are more dangerous than people may realize.

I saw someone riding a Lime scooter this morning at Halsted and Armitage.

This is way outside of the pilot zone. How is this even possible? The guy looked like he was riding to work, wearing a helmet and carrying a backpack. 

I thought these were were supposed to auto shut down once they left the pilot zone?

Same here! That's interesting you saw one there, of all places. Since you'd think the furthest east one could ride a scooter, was on Cortland Ave west of the river.

As the weather has gotten nicer and I've finally gotten out to the LFT a few times this week, I am reminded that our age-old nemesis is not the scooter, it is most definitely the rollerblader (bonus nemesis points when they are tethered to a large dog with an extra long leash). I had one of these goofs this morning doing his damndest to prove that even the shiny new Flyover wasn't designed for people that want to skate in an 8' wide sidewinding pattern.

At least scooters go in a straight line...

The potholes, watch for the potholes all you scoot people!

Left this tweet out,

"The good news is another cyclist stopped, calling 911 and waited with them until help arrived."

Some novice scoot people are doing it all with regularity. Shoaling, fast close passing,  salmoning, sidewalk riding, and riding unpredictably. You know, the usual stuff we all dislike with our fellow bicycle riders. They are not reading and following the road rules on the laminated card on the front of the scooter. So in reality there is nothing different going on. Just the usual social interaction of users of the roadway. Except for the rare criminal sociopath. 

Most of the scooters in the evenings have dead batteries in them now from the teens playing on them during the day. There are less around now in the hoods and more in the main business areas.  

Scoot on, all you scoot people! But remember the rules and things will be fine.

I was driving today and encountered some scooters, obviously part of some program but not in the designated areas.  The scooters go too fast.  How fast can a person scoot, on average, on a real human-powered scooter?  Certainly not 15 miles an hour.  Let's start by throttling the scooters at 10 mph and seeing how it goes. 

I agree Jim. 10 mph on e-scooter shares. 

What? John G. just posted that the new e-Divvies will top out their speed at 18 mph. Yow! Imagine getting hit with that hunk of metal at top speed!

Yeah, that's what I think whenever I see cyclists 90 lbs heavier than me who are working on their Strava PRs on their $3000 road bikes.

--108-lb commuter on ebike, not aiming for PRs 


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