Bird scooters arrive on campus

Grace Sherban, Campus Editor

Within the past few years, company names such as Bird and Lime have become increasingly popular with their electronic scooters becoming ever present in major metropolitan cities around the country. Many urban areas have been left baffled by the sudden appearance of these scooters. While many like the scooters, these places have been left to deal with the consequences of blocked sidewalks and speed demons disrupting pedestrians. 

JCU has become the most recent target of the electric scooter craze with scooters being placed on Fairmont Circle right next to the BP. Ever since the scooters have been placed, the sight of students whizzing by at any time of the day has become the new normal. 

This most recent addition to the JCU campus provides an interesting look at sustainability and the need for these scooters on a college campus. Research has shown that electric scooters leave a sizable impact on the environment both in terms of manufacturing and use. With the average lifespan of scooters varying greatly, there is a constant need to produce more scooters while also having to find a sustainable way to reuse older models.

Bird scooters in the wild (Shutterstock)

According to the official Bird website, they try their best to find ways to reuse and recycle older models but it is hard to know for sure the total percentage of the scooter that is being reused. As a Jesuit university, a pillar of a John Carroll education is an emphasis on solidarity and service not just to people but to our environment as well. The environmental impact of these scooters is still something that we do not know the full consequences of yet.



For those who live on campus or in apartments close to JCU, Bird scooters can be used by those who need to go on a quick Target run or looking for something fun to do. 

Graduate student Miles Tiemeyer says, “I think that they allow people to get out and enjoy the weather. If you have a long walk to campus, it can make it a little bit quicker which can help with people’s stress.”

No matter the reason for taking a ride on one of these electric scooters, they can potentially lead to the injury of not just the rider but pedestrians as well. There have been numerous lawsuits against companies, such as Bird, over injuries that were caused by a malfunctioning scooter. If a scooter malfunctions, it is dangerous for the person riding as well as other people sharing the sidewalk. 

An anonymous JCU student who has ridden one of the scooters says, “When you are going too fast, it is a little scary to turn quickly. I got really scared because I rode past two children on bikes and I felt if they cut in front of me, I would have not been able to stop in time.”

There are many opposing opinions swirling around campus on the presence of these scooters and only time will tell what will eventually happen to them. It is already common to see them strewn all over campus in every place imaginable. So the question becomes how can Bird scooters exist on campus without being a disruption?