Bird is bribing riders to wear helmets with ride credits

Shawn Knight

TechSpot Staff
Staff member

Electric scooters are a convenient way to get around densely-packed metropolitan areas but they’re not without inherent risks. Lots of riders fail to take the proper safety precautions, leading to thousands of injuries each year that could be mitigated.

Scooter operator Bird is well aware of the issue and is now incentivizing riders to wear a helmet. How so? By bribing them, of course.

Bird will now ask riders to take a selfie at the end of their ride and share it to demonstrate helmet usage. The company will reward safe riders with a future ride credit, we’re told. Riders are also encouraged to share their selfies on social media with the hashtag #BirdHelmetSelfie to promote wider adoption of helmets.

Paul Steely White, director of safety policy and advocacy at Bird, said that while the most effective way to reduce safety incidents is to improve infrastructure, they also want to help improve adoption around helmet usage to reduce injury severity in the event of an accident.

Bird is taking it one step further with the creation of an entire marketplace devoted to selling safe riding gear. No word yet on when this marketplace will go live, however.

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ShagnWagn

TS Evangelist
These damn things need to be banned from the streets and sidewalks. They are illegally parked, abandoned commercial vehicles. They are also not licensed for road use. Basically they litter the streets and are a safety risk even for people trying to walk around them. They also pull them out when winter hits - the time when most people would want to use them. They are an eyesore like trash, so I treat them like trash. "We are getting rich off enabling people to be fat - one ride at a time!"
 

amghwk

TS Guru
I wouldn't choose "bribing" as the approprie word to use in this situation. Besides being obviously blunt and obtrusive, "bribe" means when the person bribes, needs something for him/herself instead of providing gratification for, in this case, the riders. They are encouraging the riders to wear for their own safety. "Incentives", "encouragements" as mentioned too, are more appropriate.
 

EClyde

TS Evangelist
I don't care if folk wear helmets with these things. What they should come with are brains. There are scores of videos of people doing dumb stuff with them and getting hurt. Here watch me scooter of this roof. I laugh every time.
 

yRaz

Nigerian Prince
These damn things need to be banned from the streets and sidewalks. They are illegally parked, abandoned commercial vehicles. They are also not licensed for road use. Basically they litter the streets and are a safety risk even for people trying to walk around them. They also pull them out when winter hits - the time when most people would want to use them. They are an eyesore like trash, so I treat them like trash. "We are getting rich off enabling people to be fat - one ride at a time!"
As long as the power output on an electric motor is less than 500watts then they are road legal without registration or inspection. I've built a few ebikes for people and they've been in excess of 2000watts sometimes(around 3horsepower). But these scooters are probably well below 500watts, I'd guess around 150-200watts or about 1/4th of a horsepower.
 

Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
Naaaaa ..... no reason to ban them or even pick on the riders. Let's just bring back Death Race 3000 and put a bounty on each one you can "tag" ...... it would be efficient and make driving in the cities a LOT more FUN!
 

ShagnWagn

TS Evangelist
As long as the power output on an electric motor is less than 500watts then they are road legal without registration or inspection. I've built a few ebikes for people and they've been in excess of 2000watts sometimes(around 3horsepower). But these scooters are probably well below 500watts, I'd guess around 150-200watts or about 1/4th of a horsepower.
Thanks for the info. I haven't checked the law in every city, but if they can't do the speed limit on the road, they are obstructing traffic, which is illegal. Just like bicyclists that block traffic, plus they know they are and just keep on blocking traffic. When I used to ride on the road with my bicycle I would only do it if I could keep up with traffic. Otherwise I am on the sidewalk unless there is a pedestrian then I go in the grass. If none of this is possible, I don't go that route. You would think common courtesy comes with common sense.