Faulconer’s proposed policies are focused on motorized scooters – the predominant mobility device used across the City – but are designed to include other types of dockless devices as the industry continues to evolve. The regulations would cover five primary areas – limiting maximum speed in designated zones, rider education, data sharing, operating fees, and legal indemnification for the City.
Using geofencing technology, operators will be required to slow their devices down to 8 mph in designated high-pedestrian traffic zones around the City, including: boardwalks in Mission Beach, Pacific Beach and La Jolla beach areas; downtown Embarcadero; promenade behind the San Diego Convention Center; Martin Luther King Jr. promenade downtown; Balboa Park; NTC Park in Liberty Station; and Mission Bay Park.
Prior to each use, companies will be required to educate riders of local and state vehicle and traffic codes and the cost of a citation for violating those laws. Each device also will need to be clearly labeled “Riding on sidewalks is prohibited.”
The operators will provide the City with detailed monthly reports that will be useful for Climate Action Plan monitoring and mobility planning, including but not limited to: deployed device data, including fleet size and utilization rates; trip information, including start/end points, routes, distances and duration; parking information; reported incidents and actions taken; maintenance activities; reported obstructions/hazards and actions taken.
Each operator will be required to indemnify the City from liability claims and each will need to hold a liability insurance policy.
Each company wishing to operate within City limits will be issued an annual permit, with a permit fee, and will be required to pay an additional operational fee for the use of City property. Costs associated with each fee are still being determined.
“Circulate San Diego supports thoughtful regulations in San Diego in order to ensure the continued availability and safe use of dockless scooters,” said Maya Rosas, policy director for Circulate San Diego. “The scooters are game changers that provide new mobility options, and with safe infrastructure they will help San Diego meet its Climate Action Plan and Vision Zero goals.”
The proposal will be reviewed by City Council’s Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods Committee this week.
“I’m pleased to have worked with Mayor Faulconer to develop important safety standards for the protection of scooter riders and pedestrians,” said Councilmember Lorie Zapf, a member of the Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods Committee. “My goal has always been to slow down the speed of the scooters and address safety concerns. With this proposal I feel confident that we will see changes for the better.”