‘Bird’ announces new safety regulations for electric scooters

SAN DIEGO -- City leaders and representatives from the dockless scooter-sharing program 'Bird" announced new regulations Tuesday to keep riders and community members safe.

California State Assemblymember Todd Gloria, San Diego Councilmember Chris Ward, representatives from 'Bird,' and 'Circulate San Diego' came together to unveil Bird's "GovTech" platform - a comprehensive set of technologies to better enable the City of San Diego to manage the electric scooters and promote greater public safety.

The new public safety measures comes after concerns expressed from the community.

"Bird and dockless sharing technologies like it represent the future of transportation and are giving San Diegans a viable alternative to cars to get around out city," said Assemblymember Todd Gloria.  "After engaging in conversations with my constituents, I believe we can do more right now at the local level to not only incorporate and keep pace with this technology, but ensure we preserve public safety at the highest level."
"Technology made the transportation option possible, and technology can, and must, make the system safer," said San Diego City Councilmember Chris Ward.  "The City of San Diego, working with residents and scooter-sharing platforms like Bird, is poised to do more to support mobility options while reclaiming our sidewalks and protecting the safe of user and residents."
Bird's GovTech platform provides initial products such as:
  • Flight Control Dashboard:  a comprehensive, customized information system for the City of San Diego to receive insights into Bird usage such as vehicle status and trip data.
  • Geo-fencing: allowing the city to create virtual perimeters and enforce "no ride" and "no parking" zones.  This will ensure Bird scooter riders do not ride in areas they should not, as determined by the city.  Geo-fencing can also alert riders on where to find designated parking zones.
  • Community Mode: using the Bird app, anyone will have the ability to report directly to Bird any incidents of unsafe riding, riding on sidewalks, or poor parking.  Reports then help Bird Flag riders' policy violations and enable the company to take any actions necessary against repeat offenders.
  • Rider Education: prominent, customizable messages that will be prompted at the beginning of every ride to educate riders about local rules and safe riding practices.  The City will be able to request particular, everyday messages such as “no sidewalk riding” as well as date-specific messaging for things such as holidays and events.

"At Bird, we are obsessed with safety," said Lys Mendez, senior manager of government partnerships at Bird.  "Safety is our top priority and we are committed to advancing the well-being of our riders and the communities we serve. San Diego has been, and continues to be, a close partner as we integrate our affordable, environmentally friendly vehicles into the fabric of the city. "