Locals reminded to stay safe as Bolt Scooters begin to hit the streets

Richmond

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — After launching on June 6 in the City of Richmond, more Bolt Scooters have appeared throughout the Richmond-area.

The new scooters have intrigued locals and many have given them a try.

“We thought that this would be something cool and unique to kind of try out,” Michael Bird said.

Bird said he was riding one of the scooters on Arthur Ashe Boulevard when he went to itch his nose and fell off.

“I tumbled over and I almost fell into traffic,” Bird said. “I bruised my hip, I scraped up my arms and my hands and I also hit my chin on the ground too.”

Bird said safety on the new Bolt scooters needs to be taken seriously. He told 8News he did no see any helmets that go along with the scooters.

Although they make travel faster for people, the Department of Public Works warns people not to treat them like toys. 

“Those riding scooters need to be mindful that the Bolt scooters are NOT toys. They should exercise caution, as they would with any device they are operating. They need to pay attention to road conditions, slow down when necessary and watch for any signage alerting them to operations/projects such as paving,” Sharon R. North, a Dept. of Public Works spokesperson, wrote in an email to 8News. 

Bird said he would like to see some changes done to the scooters.

 “Make them a little more stable, and reduce the speed,” Bird said.

Sarah Haynes, the co-founder of Bolt Mobility Corporation, sent 8News a statement regarding the safety of the new scooters in Richmond. 

Safety is Bolt’s top priority.  From the design of our scooters, to providing committed 24/7 customer service and daily equipment maintenance, our primary focus is the care and protection of our users. Safety instructions and best practices are outlined each time someone downloads the Bolt app and initiates their first ride, we provide free helmets to individuals upon request, and have local teams monitoring devices to improve our product and promoting responsible rider usage.  

Since launching in Richmond and with over 11,000 rides completed, we have not received any reports of accidents or injuries. Bolt strictly adheres to all city regulations, including observing the maximum speed limit, and we work closely with city officials to monitor and improve our operations.  While we have not been made aware of the specific issues reported, we encourage riders to immediately contact us when they have an accident or experience a problem with our scooter.  Our Richmond team on the ground can respond to any issue quickly, and we look forward to continuing to our service to the community as we provide safe and sustainable transportation options for all.  

                                                                            -Sarah Haynes, Bolt Mobility 

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