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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They are not permitted, geo-fenced, inoperable to be in the downtown area. Unless you physically carry it in or collect a bunch in your pickup truck and dump 'em there. 

Thanks for posting this, Yasmeen.

I'm excited about the scooters, honestly. Anything to get people out of their cars and considering alternative modes of transportation.

Obviously there will be problems... but we forget how bad the air pollution, fatalities, traffic, etc., of driving really are. When I commute by train (December-March), I have to cross Roosevelt at S Indiana Ave. I am regularly almost hit a few times a week by the drivers turning right or left at my intersection. My husband and I have lovingly named it "Douchebag Corners." It's insane. Bring on the scooters.

Okay, the gloves are now coming off for the scooter share idiots!

After observing for 3 days(3-strikes) with scooter share riders of all ages(adults?!) on the sidewalks, 

I will now be calling out loudly, 

"Get off the sidewalk, use the street! "

I urge others to call out also.

A full speed scooter and pedestrian collision is bound to happen soon.

Yep, it's happening . . .

Reported injuries are now increasing:

Call out: to verbally hold someone accountable for their actions and or words. To challenge someone in some way. 

I am not yelling and/or angry at any person, (9-99yrs. old) riding a scooter share. I am upset that they are not yet comprehending what their agreed upon requirements are for renting these scooters is in reality. 

I am a compassionate and understanding cyclist that would like these new users to actually use their legs and try pedaling a bicycle instead of letting a battery powered board propel them at 15 mph on a sidewalk with no margin of error if someone pops out of a storefront or property gangway and gets clocked in the ribcage, spine and kidneys. 

If you agree to the terms of scooter share use why not follow them? 

Okay, I'll do another tolerant grace period.

But it's three strikes and you're out again. 

I'm sure that won't take long. 

I'm not sure what is accomplished by yelling at a scooter user. I agree, they shouldn't be on the sidewalks but isn't there a nicer way to get this point across if you feel compelled to tell them? Did people feel compelled to yell at Divvy riders when they first came out? Sometimes the sidewalk can be the only safe option when there's no infrastructure. 

Just a reminder of the first line of this post... 

Please try to impart the patience and compassion you would have for a first time bike commuter.

With all the bad press, there's a good likelihood the scooter program will go bust. And even if it doesn't think of these additional, new vulnerable users (humans) of the infrastructure potential bike people getting their first taste of what non-car freedom feels like. Do you really want them to have a bad taste in their mouths from cyclists yelling at them? Do we really want to treat our fellow vulnerable people as poorly as we've been treated? This is exactly the reason I refuse to go negative about scooters - I'd like more people to ride bikes and if ever there was a demographic ripe for the picking, it would be a scooter rider. 

If you want to be angry at someone, be angry at the scooter companies. Please spare the scooter users your wrath. 


I agree Yasmin- down here in Pilsen it’s almost exclusively teenagers tearing around and having a blast, and they’re riding in the street like they’re supposed to! It’s great.

I'm moving to Pilsen . . .

Scooters are overrunning the 6O6. The fixie kids on the Damen plaza seem to no longer use their bikes and are hangin' with their now cool self-propelled rental scooters.

So we're actually losing cyclists to the new no-physical-effort scooters instead of gaining more IMO.

What exactly is the concern here? The people riding scooters on the 606 in that video look to be going roughly the same speed as bikes, and they take up less space. Everyone looks like they're having fun, riding safely and no one is getting hurt. 

For comparison, there's a Strava segment for the 606 that runs the entire 2.4 miles from West to East. There are just over 2500 entries from people who logged bike rides on that segment. 1,386 (more than half) posted average speeds over 15mph.  There are a few dozen that have an average speed over 25mph and the top average speeds are nearly 30mph.

A scooter rider traveling at max speed is still slower than the majority of those cyclists. 

Thanks Phillip and PJC for your posts. The alarmist reactions seem over the top to me. It seems the concerns I have about all of this negativity translating to abusing scooter users has led to one being pushed by a cyclist. 

We learned from a rider (who wishes to remain anonymous) that they were scooting (with a helmet) along Milwaukee this week when a cyclist pushed them over, then rode away.”

The scooter rider fell into the street, dislocated their shoulder, and broke their elbow and wrist. They are recovering but in a lot of pain. We have seen the police report and hospital forms.”


Please, let’s all be kind to one another. Scooter users are just as vulnerable as we are. They aren’t the enemy. 



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