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Pittsburgh Eyes Electric Scooters, Although They're Not Yet Street Legal In Pennsylvania

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) - A scooter-share service is rolling into Pittsburgh, but there are several bumps in the road.

KDKA spotted a new installation of public electric scooters downtown Thursday. Pittsburgh Department of Mobility and Infrastructure says they're in the process of finalizing the plan and getting approval.

spin scooters
(Photo Credit: KDKA Photojournalist Tim Lawson)

The scooters are from a company called Spin, which is in dozens of cities around the world like Los Angeles, Nashville, Orlando, Portland, Tampa and Washington D.C.

According to Spin's website, the company "partners with cities, campuses, community groups and businesses to provide dockless scooter-share services to get you where you need to go."

But don't start looking for them yet -- PennDOT doesn't allow scooters on the road. State law would have to be changed to make it happen. So far, a bill in the legislature isn't getting any traction.

Then there's the question of liability and safety. Insurance companies don't like them, and at least one city, Indianapolis, has banned them from the street because of too many injuries.

Electric scooter companies like Lime and Bird have faced backlash and lawsuits over alleged scooter safety failure and injuries, the Washington Post reports.

Karina Ricks, head of the city's Mobility and Infrastructure Department, told KDKA's John Shumway they're highly supportive of the idea and want to make it ready as soon as possible. But Ricks admits they're not street legal yet.

KDKA was told the scooters in Pittsburgh would be painted black and gold. They're not expected to be available until early spring.

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