It’s been some time since the overnight surprise strike of scooters were scattered stealthy about upon sunrise, surrounding Portland sidewalks and storefronts. Now that we’ve had some time to adjust to this new ride-share transit in our amazing road infrastructure, it’s time to assess its purpose how we can use it safely. From road awareness to personal safety, I want to ensure everybody’s well-being on the street. That’s why Cycle Portland is happy to offer useful E-Scooter info and helmet rentals in Portland!
Rules of the Road
In order to be safe, it is important to first understand the rules of the road!
Helmet rentals in Portland
According to the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) and its list of electric scooter rules, it is important to ALWAYS wear a helmet as required by state law. Lucky for you, Cycle Portland is one of few places in Portland that you can rent a helmet for the day! For just $5 you can use one of our helmets until close at 6PM. Alternatively, we have some of the lowest helmet prices at $20 for both our black nutcase or silver sport style helmets!
Do you know who is not required to wear a helmet? The foot traveling pedestrian! Stay off the sidewalks. Just like bicycles, sidewalk riding is illegal and dangerous. From what I’ve witnessed, this is one of scariest sights, watching scooter stars weave through the gaps in sidewalk traffic. For the sake of everybody’s safety, take a dip off the sidewalk lip and use the vehicle lane. Keep yourself in bike lanes and greenways or stay to the right in roadways leaving private and public transit room to pass.
Some citizens also have more rights than scooters out on the road. As a scootist, you schould always yield to people walking, biking or anybody disabled. Yielding may cause you to come to a complete stop, which you should be doing anyway when you approach any stop sign or light! Good for you for cutting down on car emissions, but shame on you if you use that as a privilege to disregard other rules of the road.
Drinking and Scooting
One of those so very disregarded rules is scooter riding while intoxicated. Just like any other vehicle, you are not allowed to operate it while under the influence of intoxicants. Not only will you receive a DUII, but you very well may find yourself missing a couple teeth when you wake up. Which is fine with me. But it’s not fine to hurt an innocent bystander or cause other dangers in our roadways. Be safe and make sure to have a designated driver.
However, that designated driver can’t also be on a scooter. Don’t hop on the back of someone’s e-transport and expect to get away with it. The scooters are meant for one rider per scooter. More than one rider causes instability on the roadway and damage to the scooter itself. Then, when parking, make sure to place it on the sidewalk close to the curb.
When push comes to scoot, respect the provided traveling device. It’s a motorized scooter for goodness sake, treat it as if it were your own. We’re living in the future!
Naturally, some opinions have formed regarding scooter use. The Portland Bureau of Transportation has recorder over 472-thousand scooter trips taken since the vehicles arrived in July. This has provided the city with extensive feedback from both locals and tourists! But where we see the benefits in getting people out of cars, we’ve also absorbed the wave of hatred directed at these two-wheeled wired whirley roadway whippers. Just take a look in the Willamette.
Keeping tabs on scooter distaste is made easy by counting the number that have been tossed in the north flowing city divider. Scooters In The River provides updates of this statistic as we try to gauge who are the culprits of such heinous crimes. But others might argue that this is the best place for them. Willamette Weekly provided insight from five Portlandians who HATE the scooters. These complaints to city hall clash with the positive outlook that many have as Portland seeks new modes of transportation.
Users of the scooters have reported to the PBOT and the results exemplify stark contrast to the negative public outcry. The survey gives us a look not only at the scooters as a replacement for automobile travel, but also at their safety, purpose of use, and popularity among locals versus visitors! But I couldn’t just sit back and let the results of some internet research give me a definitive answer. So I hit up one of my favorite pubs looking for some useful scoot gossip.
Meandering my way over the Burnside Bridge, passing pedestrians, bikes, scooters and cars (because I’m just that fast), I arrived at the bar. There, I spoke with Chavelie Rodriguez, local bartender at Base Camp Brewing Company and avid… AVID cyclist to get her stance on the rise of the scooters. “I see them everywhere randomly. Although I understand their potential, I find they are unsafe for the casual user. I never see people wearing a helmet and [as a bartender I’ve noticed] many riders are intoxicated.” Casual users do seem to be the most reckless with the new transport vehicle. Does this mean we’ll see more regulations? Maybe a required test before use? Possibly a scooter license??? Who knows, but we need keep people safe. We need to get users those helmets.
The scooters are on trial for two more weeks here in Portland before they are taken off the road while the city decides its next move. So make sure to get in those last couple trials so you now where you stand. When the trial is over, swing into the shop for a bicycle rental to enjoy cruising around the streets of Portland. Until then, come into the shop for $5 helmet rentals in Portland! Be safe, be considerate, be weird. Don’t be one of these stereotypical scootists. Be a part of positive change!