BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Baton Rouge’s first known functioning scooter rental company is here.
GOAT Scooters was spotted in the parking lot across from the Dick’s Sporting Goods at the Mall of Louisiana.
The company released the following statement Tuesday, June 25:
“We are a local business that is looking to expand fairly quickly. Our main concern is safety; which is the reason we chose a controlled environment FIRST, that is located at the Mall Of Louisiana before we expand. We hope to work closely with the city of Baton Rouge and the surrounding parishes to usher in the future of Micro-mobility. Our scooters can be used for fun, but most importantly it can be used to transport users from point a to point b. We are apart of the Downtown Business Association and are searching for a permanent location DOWNTOWN diligently.”
The Downtown Development District (DDD) did tell WAFB they haven’t had contact with GOAT Scooters and were unfamiliar with the company. The city’s e-bike share partner, Gotcha, told WAFB it plans to add the scooter fleet it has in other markets to Baton Rouge eventually. So what’s the city going to do about it? This is what’s going on in other cities around the country and what Baton Rouge residents should be prepared for.
Zoom on! These scooters can be fun and affordable. They can go nearly 20 mph and people can ride them on the right part of the road or on sidewalks for just $1 and about an additional 15 cents for every minute thereafter.
Squeeze the brakes! They do clog up bike lanes and some people try to ride them next to cars and create a headache for drivers.
Zoom on! They are great for tourism and people wanting to explore the Red Stick. Students are going to love riding them to class, especially when they’re late.
Squeeze the brakes! This is the big one. Cities like Austin and Nashville are among those that have banned the scooters at one point because they are often not parked in designated areas. They’re left in the middle of sidewalks, in front of homes, and just flat out in the way. There are hundreds of them lying all over the place in some cities. Watch your step or you could trip!
Zoom on! They are eco-friendly and all electric.
Squeeze the brakes! They are also a road hazard. Plenty of reported accidents take place on these scooters.
Zoom on! The City of Baton Rouge does appear to be out in front of it though. A new law that takes effect July 1 says a parish or municipality can decide where the rental scooters can and can’t be used. Police are also able to issue riders tickets.
Squeeze the brakes! The scooters are sometimes intentionally damaged. There are reports of people cutting the brakes on the scooters in San Francisco and people in Portland also tossing them in rivers, trees, you name it.