E-Mobility Devices Offer Consumers “Lower Virus Risk” and More Convenience Than Public Transit

(p. A9) A boom in electric-powered mobile devices is bringing what is likely to be a lasting change and a new safety challenge to New York’s vast and crowded street grid.

The devices have sprouted up all over. Office workers on electric scooters glide past Manhattan towers. Parents take electric bikes to drop off their children at school. Young people have turned to electric skateboards, technically illegal on city streets, to whiz through the far corners of New York.

Though many of these riders initially gave up their subway and bus trips because of the lower virus risk of traveling outdoors, some say they are sticking with their e-mobility devices even as the city begins to move beyond the pandemic.

“I use the scooter for everything, it’s really convenient,” said Shareese King, 41, a Bronx resident who deleted the Uber app from her phone after she started running her errands on an electric scooter.

Electric bikes, scooters and other devices are in many cases made for urban life because they are affordable, better for the environment, take up little, if any, street space for parking and are just fun to use, said Sarah M. Kaufman, the associate director of the Rudin Center for Transportation Policy and Management at New York University.

For the full story, see:

Winnie Hu and Chelsia Rose Marcius. “As Personal E-Mobility Spreads, Safety Challenges Grow.” The New York Times (Tuesday, October 28, 2021): A9.

(Note: the online version of the story was updated Nov. [sic] 8, 2021, and has the title “As E-Scooters and E-Bikes Proliferate, Safety Challenges Grow.”)

One thought on “E-Mobility Devices Offer Consumers “Lower Virus Risk” and More Convenience Than Public Transit”

  1. I wonder how that “convenience” is working out in the harsh, icy, awful, interior-continental climate of much of North America in January. Maybe not so well.

    Of course, given the absolute awfulness of US public transit, with its shiftless overpaid operators who don’t care a whit about showing up on time, and its utter lack of decent service frequency, maybe the “e-” stuff is still slightly useful right now in a very few places. And who knows, it might occasionally be useful here and there on a few days of the year in other seasons. But maybe not so much during the frequent stormy weather – hail, gales, thunderstorms, etc.; nor in the 115-degree heat of the summertime Southwest, nor in the equivalent heat/humidity of the summertime Southeast. And not at all if one has to cross one of the ubiquitous bridges that forbid all but cars, buses, and trucks.

    Really, there’s plenty of reasons why anyone who possibly can, drives. Why on earth do media and pundits put so much effort, or any effort at all, in being contrarian about this?

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