St. Joseph’s city commissioners heard about Bird Scooters following a bumpy rollout of Bird’s rental program in the city. Coming out of Memorial Day, commissioners said they had complaints about Bird scooters being left around town and poor driver behavior, including people taking the scooters on sidewalks and the pier and underage driving . At Monday’s meeting, Bird Scooters’ Nick Mitchell told commissioners the company was hiring an additional fleet manager to help tackle wayward scooters being left out of bounds.
“Once we manage to find a second fleet manager, this kind of issue will sort itself out and you will see scooters being more rebalanced in high demand areas,” Mitchell said.
The company has reduced the number of scooters in the city and reinforced no-go areas for each unit. Mitchell said Bird can prevent scooters from being driven in specific areas and also knows the location and status of each. He added that he has increased the educational component of his app to drive safety messages into the minds of customers. He also said proof of age could be required with every ride, rather than just when creating an account. Mayor Laura Goos said she still has concerns, but thinks the city should continue to work with Bird. She said the company was willing to listen and act quickly.