FINAL UPDATE: IB 56 cleared at Raymond & Delta. Regular service resuming. Expect residual delays. (More: 14 in last 48 hours)

Three Golden Rules to Improve Scooter Safety

SFMTA.com/ScooterSafety
Monday, May 1, 2023

The SFMTA has some exciting news for all who use the sidewalk in the city! Starting May 1, 2023, we'll be launching a new safety campaign to promote safe and responsible electric scooter use for both permitted scooter share devices and privately operated scooters. The campaign will focus on three key safety rules that every rider should keep in mind while riding: no sidewalk riding, no speeding and no double riding (two people riding one device). By educating riders about the dangers of sidewalk riding, unsafe speeding and riding, and improper parking, we hope to make the city safer for everyone.    

Animation images of cartoon animals riding a scooter. There are two images side by side. The left image shows a rabbit riding a scooter on the sidewalk with a turtle falling and a rhinoceros standing. The right image shows the same rabbit on a stationery scooter with the turtle and rhinoceros standing and smiling.

Sidewalk riding has been a major concern for pedestrians in San Francisco, and it's illegal to ride an electric scooter on the sidewalk.   

Animated image of a cat, turtle and rabbit on a scooter with a bear holding up their hand attempting to the stop the riders.

 Electric scooters can travel at speeds of up to 15 miles per hour, which can be dangerous if riders aren't paying attention to their surroundings. The SFMTA's safety campaign will encourage riders to be mindful of their speed (riding over 15 miles per hour is illegal) and to obey traffic laws

The campaign will also focus on emphasizing double riding is illegal. By law, only one rider should ride a scooter at a time.  

Animated image of a rabbit on the scooter with a bottle. They are confused and distraught.

To spread the word about this safety campaign, we will be placing posters on Muni buses, displaying ads in Muni bus stops and running ads on social media. This should help us reach as many scooter riders as possible and encourage them to prioritize safety while riding. 

Three images showing the side of a bus, a station platform sign and a close up of a car car inside a bus.

The SFMTA already has been actively working to improve scooter safety in San Francisco. We have implemented several policies and regulations, including: 

  • Requiring permitted scooter companies to provide a lock-to system to keep parked scooters out of the accessible path of travel  
  • Requiring permitted scooter companies to develop and implement a plan for safe riding. These plans include rider training, in-app messages with safety messages and sidewalk detection technology on their devices.  
  • Encouraging scooter permittees to adopt an escalating penalty structure for improper riding and parking 
  • Working with the Port of San Francisco to reduce sidewalk riding on the Embarcadero.  

The agency has also worked to improve infrastructure for scooter riders. We have installed: 

  • 3,000+ racks installed since the beginning of scooter permit program in 2018 
  • 11,000+ bike racks available citywide for scooter parking  
  • 465 miles of bikeways in San Francisco 
  • 78 miles off-street paths 
  • 139 miles of bike lanes (Class II) 
  • 43 miles of separated bikeways (Class IV)  
  • 45 miles of bike lanes and separated bikeways added since 2018 
  • 33 miles of Slow Streets 

The agency is also working to expand the active transportation network in the city through our new Active Communities Plan

If you want to report any complaints related to scooter riding, you can call 311 or visit the 311 website.  

To learn more about what the SFMTA is doing to promote a safe and useful scooter share system, visit our scooter share permit project page and view our data dashboards