SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) – A scooter company called Bird is ruffling a few feathers in Pacific Beach.
The scooter company is being accused of allowing customers to leave their scooters pretty much wherever they want instead of having designated parking for its rentals.
Bird does not have a store or office. Instead, the electric scooters are left on sidewalks – waiting for the next person to rent them.
Kit Kantner owns the building that somehow became the Bird’s favorite nest.
“It’s unacceptable. Yesterday, I actually talked to a technician that was here repairing one. I asked him to have his owner remove them from my property. I come back this morning and there were seven,” he said.
Renting a Bird scooter is easy. All customers have to do is download an app, open it up and it will show them where there are scooters in their area.
Once a scooter is located, user hit the unlock option and they are good to go. It costs one dollar to unlock an electronic scooter and 15 cents a minute.
San Diego police said riders must have a helmet and cannot ride on sidewalks – laws that many locals said riders are breaking.
“I have heard from locals who have seen people crashing into locals or hitting them on cars,” said a Pacific Beach resident.
Kantner said he is worried someone will trip over the ones on his property. “This business just comes in, drops their equipment on my property – making me exposed to potential liabilities in the future.”
Kit made it clear he is not against the idea of scooters replacing cars. In fact, several people told News 8 they love the idea of scooter sharing to reduce emissions and congestion. They just question whether parking scooters where they are not wanted is the right way to do business.
News 8 reached out to Bird’s public relations contact. He said they could not do an on camera interview, but did email the following statement:
"Bird chose San Diego for a limited pilot program because the city has a great reputation for fostering innovation and encouraging tech entrepreneurs. The city is grappling with significant traffic and parking problems, and Bird is looking to provide an eco-friendly, last mile solution to address these issues.
Our Birds are picked up every evening, and parked on designated private property each morning. We're pleased that so many people on Pacific Beach love riding Birds and have decided to join us in our mission to get more people out of their cars."