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Nashville mayor wants to ban scooters in his city

The recent death of a 26-year-old man in a scooter accident “emphasized the dangers associated with urban scooter riding.”

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Nashville Mayor David Briley is asking the Metro Council to repeal the existing scooter regulations and ban their operations.

Briley notified the scooter companies of this change in a letter on Thursday.

“Nashville prides itself in being a friendly and welcoming city for the thousands of tourists visiting us each month, but we must also be a safe city. Based upon what I have witnessed firsthand, the recent influx of scooters in our city is causing us to be less safe and more visually cluttered,” Briley wrote to the seven scooter companies operating in the city.

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Late Saturday night Brady Gaulke's family had to make the most difficult decision any parent would have to make, to take their son off life support. 

Briley said the death of the 26-year-old last week after a serious scooter accident “emphasized the dangers associated with urban scooter riding.”

Scooters were introduced to Nashville last year and the city banned them almost immediately because no regulations were in place.

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“Since scooters descended upon Nashville prior to the city having any regulatory framework in place, the Metropolitan Government has been trying to deal with the issue in a reasonable and responsible way. The Metropolitan Council has attempted, through the enactment of two ordinances, to post reasonable regulations and restrictions on the scooter companies and riders. These include: parking restrictions, including specific requirements that scooters be parked in compliance with the American with Disabilities Act (ADA); age restrictions for riders; and a prohibition on riding on sidewalks in commercial areas. While each of the above provisions is violated many times daily, the Metropolitan Government simply does not have the resources to devote to adequately address all of the problems through enforcement. Of further concern to me are the many scooters that are illegally parked and operated on the sidewalk, which makes it almost impossible for persons with disabilities to navigate. This is a great liability for the Metropolitan Government, and one that cannot be allowed to persist,” the Mayor wrote.

They're a wildly popular way to get around, and they've just made a big comeback. The city pulled electric scooters in June, but the companies have just relaunched. Police said the same problems are happening all over again.

Briley has given the scooter companies for days to amend the current ordinances or he will ask the Department of Law to draft legislation repealing the existing scooter regulations and banning their operation.

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"If I do not see a proposal from operators amending the current ordinances to address the above concerns within the next 30 days, I will ask the Metro County to approve this legislation," Briley wrote in the letter.

The letter was sent to Bird Rides, Inc., Bolt Mobility Tennessee, LLC, Gotcha Mobility LLC, Neutron Holdings, Inc., dba Lime, Social Bicycles, LLC, dba JUMP, Lyft, Inc., Skinny Labs Inc., dba Spin