Razor launches its electric scooter share program in Long Beach

Bundles of red Razor electric scooters were sprinkled across Long Beach on Thursday evening, the first batch to hit the ground as part of the city’s pilot program.
It’s a first for both Razor and Long Beach, as the company announced Friday that its Long Beach unveiling marks the launch of its own dockless electric scooter share program.
“This is the first city for Razor Share with plans to expand to multiple cities across the country,” a company statement said.
Danny Simon, Razor USA’s chief operating officer,  said in a phone interview that there are currently 150 scooters available in the city, the maximum allowed by the company’s permit.
Long Beach’s regulations allow companies to apply for a second permit for a maximum of 300, and Simon said it’s possible his company will apply to provide that many. He said Razor will work with the city to determine exactly how many scooters would best fit Long Beach.
“Our goal is to grow the fleet to the appropriate size,” Simon said.
A representative for Long Beach’s Office of Mobility did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Simon said he hopes Razor will be able to avoid some of the backlash that other electric scooter share programs have experienced in places like San Francisco and Santa Monica – two cities where Razor also has plans to set up shop.
“There’s a few things we’re doing differently” than other companies, Simon said. “Our goal is to truly be proactive with the scooters, how they are positioned around the city – to resolve complaints before they happen.”
Simon said one of the ways the company hopes to dodge criticism is by providing on-the-ground staff around the city to help riders troubleshoot the new gadgets, return them to designated drop zones, and inspect and maintain them every evening.
“Every scooter that gets put out on the street every morning – we know it’s a quality scooter, every time,” he said.
Opening up in Long Beach comes with some risk for Razor, as the city’s own solution to prevent gripes is to wade into scooter-sharing slowly with a pilot program. For now, companies are only guaranteed access to the city through the end of October. After that, Long Beach will reassess and determine a more formal path for scooters’ future here.In working with the city so far, Simon said he’s “heard a variety of scenarios that could happen” once the pilot program ends. But no matter what the city decides, he said, Razor will cooperate.
“We’re hoping (the pilot program) rolls seamlessly into a more longer-term program, but again, we’re willing to work with the city in whatever way is best,” he said.
For now, riders can take advantage of free scooter rides as Razor celebrates its rollout. Long Beach riders’ first three rides will be free, up to 15 minutes per ride. If those rides go beyond 15 minutes, riders will be charged the standard rate of 15 cents per minute.
After those free rides, the service costs $1 to start per use and 15 cents for every additional minute. Riders must be at least 18, have a valid driver’s license and wear a helmet.
To use the scooters, riders must download the Razor Share app, which shows a map of scooter locations and can scan the scooter’s barcode to activate it for use.
Simon said Razor plans to host community events throughout Long Beach in the next week, where residents can test out the scooters and receive a free helmet. Details of those events have not yet been released.

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