KANSAS CITY, Mo. — With a new season for Kansas City’s outdoor entertainment venues upon us, KCPD Major Scott Simons voiced grave concerns over the safety of scooters in places like Westport on weekend nights and First Fridays in the Crossroads Arts District.
“So we’ve been seeing an interesting phenomenon with these Bird scooters, mostly in the downtown area, I’m slightly concerned that it’s going to move down to Westport,” Simons said.
His comments came during Wednesday’s meeting of the Westport Event Management Coordination Committee.
“I’ve seen all ages on them, they have no complete regard for traffic, and we’ve tried to do a little bit of enforcement, but they don’t stop for us. They just keep going,” Simons said. “So somebody’s going to get killed on these things.”
The veteran lawman continued.
“Then when we try to address it, they just take off from us,” he said. “Well, we’re not going to continue to pursue them because I don’t want to be behind one of these individuals when they blow a red light and get creamed by a car.”
Representatives from both Bird and Spin scooters issued statements emphasizing the priority both companies put on rider safety.
Committee members also discussed the possibility of using geofencing technology to limit scooters at times and places with high pedestrian traffic.
Assistant City Manager Rick Usher vowed to continue the conversations at City Hall.
“We have a staff team that communicates with Bird and Spin representatives,” Usher said. “And I certainly will follow up with Major Simon after this meeting.”