While easy enough to rent, the electric scooters that the Santa Monica, California-based Bird company landed in Scottsdale
Just like bike rentals “The Bird” works very similar, you first download the Bird app and in about five minutes, after paying with a credit card, scanning a driver’s license and reading through user terms you are on your way.
Bird must comply with city and state laws:
- The scooters must be used on roads, not sidewalks.
- No scooters in Scottsdale parks or parking garages.
- No scooters staged on sidewalks.
Riders must consent to a safety agreement and view an in-app tutorial before riding off. A lengthy user agreement stipulates:
- Riders cannot carry a backpack on the scooters.
- Riders cannot operate scooters under the influence.
- One person per scooter.
- Scooters cannot be parked on private property.
- Riders also agree to not hold Bird liable for injuries.
Injuries have been reported. A helmetless rider in Santa Monica was seriously injured in January when she didn’t stop at an intersection and crashed into a car, according to the Los Angeles Times. A few months ago, two women on scooters were critically injured when they were struck by a car in Nashville, Tennessee, according to The Tennessean. Santa Monica police have begun citing underage riders and those riding without a helmet, the Times reported. The company has since required users to scan a copy of their driver’s license. Users can also request the company ship a helmet to them.
Who is Bird?
Travis VanderZanden founded the company, which launched in Santa Monica last September.
VanderZanden has a background in the ride-hailing industry. He made headlines a few years ago when Lyft accused him of breaking confidentiality agreements when he resigned as the company’s chief operating officer and went to work for ride-hailing rival Uber. The case was settled out of court in 2016, according to Reuters. Now, with venture capital funding, VanderZanden is focused on expanding the user market for electric scooters.