back to article Bird, Lime, and Xiaomi face scooter sueball

Scooter providers Bird and Lime, and scooter makers Segway and Xiaomi, face a lawsuit in Los Angeles, Calif., claiming that the two-wheeled tech toys are poorly manufactured and maintained. The complaint, which aspires to be certified as a class action, was filed earlier this month in a Los Angeles Superior Court by McGee, …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    These things are a ****ing menace.

    Ban them.

    Anyone "injured" "riding" them probably deserves it. (Based on my observations of them on Austin's streets.)

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Austin -- Not just Austin

      The problem(s) seem to be many with these things. They're really too small to drive in the street and be seen by motorists especially if they zip in and out of traffic. They're also too fast for sidewalk use where there's heavy foot traffic. Both drivers and pedestrians do dumb things like suddenly stop or vehicles suddenly change lanes.

      Do they require the "driver" to have a driver's license? Or a license with a motorcycle validation? If not, they should.

      While it's commendable that they think it's good for the environment, there's just too many unanswered questions. The cities are also at fault to some degree as they don't really have dedicated lanes for bicycles much less these things.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Austin -- Not just Austin

        Here in Santa Monica they’re supposed to require a drivers license to rent and they’re supposed to be used only on the streets. So why did this 12 year old kid almost run me over on the sidewalk ? Millennials leave these things all over the place like trash when they’re done and so do the stoner kids who run up their parents electricity bills charging the scooters at night. These things are environmentally friendly, they’re mostly replacing walking with something that requires an electric charge from power plants that largely rely on fossil fuels.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Austin

      French style:

  2. Kernel

    Meanwhile, in NZ

    We've had the Lime scooters deployed in two cities for about three weeks - already the taxpayer has had to fork out for 30 injury claims due to them - I can see them getting regulated here in the very near future.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not a viable option for genetic cleansing.

    Too many idiots, too few scooters.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    When I read the headline I thought the scooters were proper scooters like the one I have, I've had mine for about 4 years and the only thing I've had to replace are the batteries.

    Why are people using these toys for commercial purposes?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Because of, you know, profit. It's a classic Silicon Valley ploy: spread as fast as you can, and then claim harm to many users/lifestyle/environment as soon as someone wants to put some regulation in.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Uh oh, whatabouterism

    I had *some* sympathy for the scooter companies - until they used whatabouterism as a defence.

    We're not talking about cars, we're talking about quality and users not behaving safely (which, by the way, is not a new thing, I can't tell you how many cyclists cycle past the "no cycling" signs on the sea promenade where I live).

    If you have a valid argument, let's here it, but talking about cars means you're gearing up for a major line of BS and (in my view) have already lost the discussion.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Uh oh, whatabouterism

      Sorry, here -> hear. Where is a grammar nazi when you need them?


  6. Duncan Macdonald Silver badge

    Blame the manufacturers ?

    As both Segway and Xiaomi make the devices for personal non-commercial use and provide instructions that the commercial operators are not following (inside storage and inspection before use), I do not see what blame should be attached to the manufacturers. Their inclusion in the lawsuit seems just to be a way to hopefully get a bigger payout than is justified.

    Blaming the manufacturers in this case is like blaming the maker of a sailing dingy because it sunk when the idiot user tried using it in a grade 5 hurricane.

  7. 0laf

    It's the MO of business these days, pass the liability and blame for everything onto the customer.

    Luckily for them most customers are idiots and are happy to do this.

    Scooters have two wheels, unlike 4 wheels vehicles if you fait to balance they will fall over. Hitting the ground (or immobile objects) at speed hurts. Hitting the ground (or immobile objects) at speed whilst not wering any protective equipment will very likely result in injury.

    These basics seem beyond a lot of people brough up driving cars filled with airbags and electronic safety aids. Safey always being someone else's problem.

  8. Unicornpiss

    Grocery stores

    Most grocery stores have "Mart Carts" or similar electric (sit down) scooters for customers that have disabilities. These are more of a commercial grade device. They're meant to be continually used, recharged constantly, and have at least a few safety features such as a beeper that sounds when backing up, and the speed limited to a couple of MPH. They are also a bit more rugged and probably have some degree of weather resistance.

    If cities are going to rent scooters, there needs to be a similar type of unit for rent. Perhaps one that can detect when being ridden on a sidewalk and slow to a walking pace, one with more safety features, and perhaps with lighting and/or reflective portions to make them visible to motorists.

    But I have to say to the people that were injured by tripping over these--WTF? And are we also going to sue skateboard, rollerblade, and bicycle manufacturers because people are idiots and meet mishap without bothering to wear any safety gear?

    1. Teiwaz

      Re: Grocery stores

      But I have to say to the people that were injured by tripping over these--WTF?

      No sympathy for phone zombies.

      I suspect not a small few were staring into mobile phone screens whilst walking, and not paying any more than 30% attention to anything not on their tiny screen (and only 20% on anything not in their tiny minds I presume).

      1. BebopWeBop

        Re: Grocery stores

        To join two threads on a recent visit to the US I saw at least two people paying more attention to their mobiles than anything else around them - while riding scooters. Its just a same that they appeared to be texting with one hand (fun watching a scooter being ridden hands free I suspect)

        1. disgruntled yank

          Re: Grocery stores

          On a recent visit to the bus stop, I saw a fellow in a car pulling away while continuing to look down at his phone. At least the scooter + payload is going to be far lighter than a standard American car, and has a lower top speed.

          In Washington, DC, the scooter riders don't seem to be that bad. Perhaps we don't have enough to make a difference. The scooters and dockless bikes do tend to end up where they shouldn't be, for days or weeks at a time.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Grocery stores

        Tiswaz "I suspect not a small few were staring into mobile phone screens whilst walking,"

        No. They just get dumped in the middle of the sidewalk or not propped on their stand correctly so they fall into the street. The Uber ones (Jump?) are free up until next week iirc. So the usual freetard behaviour is to just ditch them where they run out of juice.

  9. Alan J. Wylie
    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bird Lime

      >Bird Lime

      It does sound like a euphemism for guano.

      1. 0laf

        Re: Bird Lime

        Yep, I thought birdlime was bird shit.

    2. BebopWeBop

      Re: Bird Lime

      Bird lime is used in appalling quantities in some mediterranean countries. Song birds - who needs them?

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And the injuries have absolutely nothing to do with the fact people ride them like demented 7 year olds on speed ?

  11. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

  12. J. Cook Silver badge

    The 'dockless' bikes are also not immune to this problem; oFo, Lime, and at least one other company have put their bikes in my local city, and It's not uncommon to see them just sitting off the side, knocked over, or seeing the local miscreants re-paint them. There was one dumped at my house (I live on a corner) one fine evening in my driveway; one of the handlebars was broken off (no mean feat), and the thing was just ditched. I've also seen one that has the wheels missing and is sitting in an alleyway.

    The scooters have been showing up in my locality as well; I have a feeling the same thing will happen as with the bikes.

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