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Atlanta’s ban on nighttime use of dockless e-scooters & e-bikes needs changes

Atlanta’s new nighttime ban on dockless e-scooters and e-bikes follows the deaths of several e-scooter riders in the late evening or early morning hours. Read the full text of it on the City website.

It’s a serious issue to be sure, but ThreadATL is concerned that this ban doesn’t address the true safety needs.

Changes should be made to the ban:

1. Leave e-bikes out of this.

First, why are e-bikes included here? There have been zero deaths on e-bikes. We’re not even aware of injury concerns. The inclusion of them too-easily raises suspicions that this measure may not truly be focused on safety for all. They should be taken out of the ban.

2. Define what measurements we’re using for achieving safety & lifting the ban.

What metrics will the City use to determine when streets are safe for these devices to be used at night again? We’re talking about transportation devices that people have come to depend upon for real mobility needs, not just recreational toys. Treat them seriously. This ban needs serious, clear measurements for reaching defined goals.

3. Actual prioritization of safer streets requires real funding. Show us the money.

The Mayor says the ban is happening because “safety must be our top priority,” but what urgent investment is the City of Atlanta making to ensure that safety happens quickly, by way of new bike lanes and safer streets? Actual priority, versus political hot-air, requires a funding stream. Let’s see it. The Mayor and City Council need to create a dedicated funding source for transportation improvements like this outside of a special tax or bonds. Otherwise, Atlanta simply cannot invest enough in streets that are safe for all.

Without making these changes, it’s arguable that the City of Atlanta is doing very little to show us that they are interested in #safestreetsforall with this ban. We encourage you to reach out to your City Council members and ask them to include these changes.