A cyclist rides past electric scooters parked in a public square in Berlin, Germany. Are scooters becoming more popular than bikes? (AP)

A cyclist rides past electric scooters parked in a public square in Berlin, Germany. Are scooters becoming more popular than bikes? (AP)

Young people ride on scooters in Paris, France. The city is making rules about where the electric two-wheelers are allowed. (AP)

Young people ride on scooters in Paris, France. The city is making rules about where the electric two-wheelers are allowed. (AP)

James Wilson lines up electric scooters on a street corner after charging them overnight in Atlanta, Georgia. Scooters are now common in many cities around the world. (AP)

James Wilson lines up electric scooters on a street corner after charging them overnight in Atlanta, Georgia. Scooters are now common in many cities around the world. (AP)

A woman drives an electric scooter through a public square in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany. (AP)

A woman drives an electric scooter through a public square in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany. (AP)

Police officers have to remove electric scooters from walkways and streets around Notre Dame cathedral in Paris, France. People tend to leave them wherever they are when they finish riding. (AP)

Police officers have to remove electric scooters from walkways and streets around Notre Dame cathedral in Paris, France. People tend to leave them wherever they are when they finish riding. (AP)

Stumped by Scooters

Posted: November 1, 2019

They’re quick. They’re cool. And they’re a cheap way to commute. The electric scooter craze is circling the globe. Cities around the world have e-scooters on their sidewalks and streets. Have they whirred into your city yet?

Some see scooters as a leap into the future. A scooter makes it easy to zip around town. They can be unlocked with an app. Anyone with a smartphone can snag a scooter. The rider’s credit card is linked to the app. Riders pay for the distance they travel. No parking space? No problem! The rider can hop off and leave the scooter anywhere. Another rider will pick it up.

Other people don’t like e-scooters. People think e-scooters are a big nuisance for drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians. Scooters are too fast and furious. They create chaos. Riders crash. Walkers get knocked down. They’re a hassle on busy city streets.

People wonder about scooters. Can you drive them on sidewalks and park them on grass? Can you ride them on four-lane roads? Can two people ride one scooter? Do you have to wear a helmet? Is a driver’s license necessary? Are scooters insured?

E-scooters are stumping city officials. Many cities make scooter rules. And some are different than others. Some cities fine riders for scooting on sidewalks. In Paris, France, speeding on a scooter can get you a hefty fine. Berlin, Germany, is making room for on-street scooter parking. Too many scooters keep cluttering German sidewalks. Spain has a hodgepodge of scooter rules. There are 19 areas in the city of Brussels, Belgium. And each area has its own scooter rules. Italy allows scooters to travel on streets at a top speed of 18 miles per hour. But when riding on sidewalks, they must wobble along at walking speed. In the Netherlands, bikes still rule. Lawmakers tell their citizens, “Don’t be tempted to bring a scooter home from vacation, because they’re not allowed on the road here anyway.”

Sooner or later, cities around the world will adjust to the scooter craze. Scooter rules will help keep people safe. Titus 3:1 reminds us to be obedient and “be submissive to rulers and authorities,” . . .  even when those poor leaders are still trying to make sense of the scooter craze.