On July 9, 2021, electric scooters were launched in the city of Pittsburgh, although exclusively downtown. If you work or routinely come into downtown Pittsburgh, you might have wondered what was happening with these various bright orange scooters. A program called MOVE 412 was initiated to help with transportation in the city of Pittsburgh. The program includes Healthy Ride bikes, Port Authority buses, Scoobi, Waze Carpool, and Zip car. A company called “Spin” is now included within Pittsburgh’s methods of transportation.
Essentially, there will be charging stations set up around the city that will dock up to six electric scooters. There is a free app that uses your phone’s Bluetooth and GPS signals to home in on the nearest scooter(s) near you. The app brings up a map that will show you the available scooters in the area.
One nice feature is they will not show scooters that are currently in use, only the available ones. You begin by downloading the app, which is fairly simple. After you have downloaded the app, you will be asked to take an education test. The test is also fairly simple. It basically tests your knowledge of scooter use and the rules. It is only three questions.
Once you have passed -- which you must before you can begin riding -- you will be asked to use your camera to scan the QR code located on the scooter you wish to use. The QR code will then signal your app to log this scooter as yours for the time being. However, you are not done yet. These scooters are not free, but they are reasonable to rent. It is $1 to start and 39 cents for each additional minute. If you have an iPhone, you can set up Apple Pay or you can simply add a credit card to your Spin account. This can be saved into your account for future use if you’d like to scooter again.
After that is all completed, you can begin your ride. The scooters are very user friendly, so you don’t have to be familiar with operating a scooter to know how to use them. Once you’ve reached your destination, you can simply pull up the Spin app and click “finish ride.” You will then be charged for how long you used the scooter. Obviously the longer the ride the more money, but with the low rate, it won’t break the bank. These scooters are a great way to get places and quite fun! The first ride will get you hooked.
Keep in mind there are a few key points to remember when using the scooters:
- You must be 16 years old to operate
- Helmets are not required but strongly encouraged
- The max speed is 15 mph
- The scooters have a range of 30 miles
- Scooter weight: 50 pounds
- You are NOT permitted on sidewalks – you can only use them on bike lanes or streets
- They have rear, front, side reflectors and a bell for safety precautions
- There is a geofence in certain areas that are restricted (Point State Park, cemeteries, Chatham/Duquense/Point Park Universities and some private plazas)
More information can be found at the link below! Have fun everyone!