Va. Beach begins enforcing ban on e-scooters at Oceanfront

Virginia Beach

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Virginia Beach’s ban on e-scooters in an area of the Oceanfront will begin on Friday.

In a news release, the city announced new regulations that will be enforced as part of the ban.

As part of the move, Bird and Lime scooter companies will scale back their presence in the area by relocating 500 to 1,000 e-scooters.

The companies will also be updating their apps with new instructions for riders and geofencing to create new virtual boundaries, the city said in the release.

Both companies are looking to have these changes completed by 5 p.m. Friday, according to the city.

“Since Lime has focused on serving Virginia Beach’s neighborhoods as a first-mile, last-mile solution, we scarcely operate on the Oceanfront, so this ban will have a minimal impact on our operations. We’ll continue to work with the City of Virginia Beach and local stakeholders to emphasize safety and promote equitable, sustainable and affordable transportation.

Lime has a slow zone on the Oceanfront, meaning those who ride on the Oceanfront are immediately slowed to 3 mph. This effectively renders their scooter inoperable and they must then walk their scooters out of the zone. The Oceanfront slow zone will not let a rider end their ride in the zone. 

Despite the slow zone and not deploying on the Oceanfront, we will remind riders through in-app messages that they are not permitted to ride on the oceanfront.,” said Lime official in a statement to 10 On Your Side.

Virginia Beach local Holly Schwartz says while they’re a fun way to travel, she can understand the restrictions.

“I can definitely see where people are getting annoyed by them because me myself, being a local, being on the streets and I see kids riding them on the main street I don’t think its safe,” she said.

Signs informing residents and visitors of the ban are being produced.

The release stated that Virginia Beach police officers will be putting an “educate and enforce” campaign into effect to inform riders.

The newly-announced regulations come after city council voted earlier this week to ban the scooters east of Arctic Avenue between Rudee Loop and 42nd Street.

In a council meeting, Virginia Beach Mayor Bobby Dyer said e-scooters pose too much of a danger to public safety.

Since May, more than 10 people have been hospitalized overnight at Virginia Beach General due to scooter injuries.

And Virginia Beach EMS stats show that 65 people have been treated in recent months from scooter injuries.

“We’ve lived without them I guess we can do it again,” added Schwartz.

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