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As Regulators Crack Down, Funds Roll in for Electric Scooters

As Silicon Valley creates driverless cars and attempts to commercialize space travel, several companies are aiming to disrupt a much more modest mode of transportation: Short trips taken by motorized, battery-powered scooters.

Dockless, app-powered scooters have popped up in cities all along the West Coast in recent months, and tech investors are taking notice. One scooter company, Bird Rides, is reportedly raking in millions from venture capitalists and is aiming for a $2 billion valuation; its main competitor Lime may not be far behind.

But as the idea gets bigger, so have scooter-related headaches. Officials in California report vehicles are regularly left all over sidewalks and roadways, that riders often don’t wear helmets and that bad behavior by scooter drivers is endangering pedestrians.

So where are electric scooters headed, and what does it mean for the future of transportation, particularly in big cities?

This week on Money Talking, Ilya Marritz talks to two journalists covering the scooter craze: Aarian Marshall, transportation reporter at Wired, and Tim Bradshaw, who covers technology for the Financial Times.

2018-06-15 16:00:00 UTC

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