This past weekend saw the third DWI arrest in Hoboken issued to someone on an e-scooter. That city, the only one so far to try these things in NJ, has had a six month pilot program since May of this year. The city council there has already canceled one of the two contracts the city had with e-scooter companies. They've also voted to ban the scooters from the city's waterfront walkways and city parks.

The ban was put into place a day after a mother walking a baby in a stroller was struck by an e-scooter. They are considering using 'geofencing' technology to help enforce the bans boundaries. You're not allowed to use them on sidewalks but many people do because they're scary to use on the street.

I know because I was just using e-scooters all weekend in Dallas, where they are EVERYWHERE! They are a lot of fun, but not without risk. They annoy drivers and pedestrians alike. They require pretty decent balance and physical coordination and some brands move pretty fast. I used both the Uber and Lyft services and it's amazingly easy, convenient and addictive.

I couldn't wait to get back outside and use one, but you can tell it's a big accident waiting to happen even for the most skilled riders. The wheels are tiny and not meant to handle roadway ruts, potholes and trolley tracks. You're not allowed to use them on sidewalks but many people do because it's so scary on some streets. Hoboken's pilot program ends November 20th and it's uncertain if they will be back next year.

Governor Murphy signed a law back in May making the e-scooters and e-bikes legal in New Jersey, so far only Hoboken and Asbury Park have taken the plunge and tried them out. They're all over in cities in California, Texas and other growing cities in the south.

Dennis Malloy photo
Dennis Malloy photo

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