A man rides a Lime Scooter along Peachtree Street in Atlanta’s Midtown community, Friday, Jan. 4, 2019.
Photo: ALYSSA POINTER/ALYSSA.POINTER@AJC.COM
Photo: ALYSSA POINTER/ALYSSA.POINTER@AJC.COM

Next metro Atlanta scooter ban could come in tiny Hapeville

The small town of Hapeville — all 2.5 square miles of it — could soon be cleared of electric scooters.

The Hapeville City Council is set to hold its first discussion of a proposed 12-month ban on the devices at the Tuesday night council meeting.

City manager Tim Young said Monday he has seen some scooters within Hapeville.

“They’re popping up so fast we haven’t had a chance to sit down and evaluate,” he said.


READ | Alpharetta bans e-scooters, becoming first in North Fulton to do so


Hapeville — population 6,500 residents — could follow Lilburn and Snellville in putting a 12-month ban on the devices; the theory is that a year gives municipalities time to figure out how or whether to regulate the scooters.

“It seems like a fairly reasonable time to think through a permanent policy,” Young said.

Several cities throughout metro Atlanta have skipped the 12-month thinking period and outright banned the e-scooters. So far Alpharetta, Marietta and Norcross have issued total bans on the scooters.


READ | Which metro Atlanta cities have banned e-scooters?


Earlier this year in the legislative session, a pair of bills that would have set standards across the state was parked so lawmakers could negotiate more with the scooter companies. That delay kicked off a steady flow of cities moving to enact their own regulations.

Hapeville is about eight miles away from Midtown, where a year and a half ago sidewalks were flooded with scooters, forcing Atlanta politicians to create rules.

Young said he has seen scooters strewn about greenspace in Hapeville. That issue — scooters seemingly left anywhere, cluttering sidewalks and disrupting traffic — has been used by many cities as rationale to ban the devices.

Then there are the injuries.

Georgia’s largest hospital, Grady Memorial, estimates it receives 80 to 100 scooter-related injuries a month that range from head injuries to broken limbs. People are getting hurt across the country; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is studying scooter injuries in Austin, Texas.


READ | After period of leniency, Atlanta Police now enforcing scooter law


“The unregulated use of commercial scooters has a significant potential detrimental impact on the safety and general welfare of residents by the congestion of busy roads and sidewalks and potential injuries by such devices,” reads part of the proposed Hapeville ordinance.

Young said the current draft of the ordinance is a 12-month ban, but all options are on the table.

“A complete ban seems a bit strong, but maybe we’ll wind up doing that,” he said.

The City Council meeting will be Tuesday at 6 p.m. in the 700 Doug Davis Drive municipal building.


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Channel 2's Dave Huddleston called the city and found out there are 10,000 registered electric scooters in Atlanta.

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