UPDATE: Ordinance to allow electric scooters in Chattanooga fails during second reading
UPDATE: Chattanoogans will not be able to rent electric scooters to ride around town anytime soon.
During Tuesday night's Chattanooga City Council meeting, an ordinance that would allow electric scooter rentals failed on its second reading due to lack of a motion.
PREVIOUS STORY: Chattanoogans could soon rent an electric scooter to ride around town. City council members heard the first reading for this ordinance during last night’s meeting.
Before the council approved the first reading, they made amendments to the proposal.
Students here at UTC have expressed the need for these scooters.
Councilman Anthony Byrd says the council is open to trying out the scooters, but they had some safety concerns.
Larger cities like Atlanta and Nashville already have electric scooters for people to use.
Since the popular scooter came out, there have been a number of injuries
Councilman Anthony Byrd says it would be nice for Chattanooga have them, but they must fit the need of the city.
“Rules that we created, you have to be 14 years old to get on one,” said Anthony Byrd. “We just hope that parents help govern the situation.”
Also, anyone under 16 will have to wear a helmet.
Byrd says although it will be the responsibility of the riders, and parents to understand the importance of safety.
The police department will also be aware of all of the rules.
“The second we have an incident or see that this is going to the left. Then we are going to shut it down,” said Byrd.
After a year of the scooters being on the street, the council will review the ordinance to make sure it's working.
Byrd says he's heard the most from college students wanting the scooter to ride around campus.
“It's hard enough for us to get from one end of UTC campus to another,” said Byrd. “I just think that this would be something for me to get to class on time. Don't you want me to pass counseling? I want you to pass.”
In other cities, there have been reported injuries caused by scooters that were left on the ground in random spots.
Byrd says they want to make sure those issues don't happen in Chattanooga.
“We want to make sure that scooters are not laying all over the streets,” said Byrd. “We want to make sure the entryways are cleared, and we want to partner with different businesses.”
The council will hear the second reading next Tuesday.
Right now it’s not clear when or if these scooters will make their way to campus or around town.