Story by: Megghan McDougall
#ScooterSquadShutdown – #ScooterSquad
“Good evening sir it’s t-“VVVVVVVRRRRRPPPMMM”
Good evening sir it’s going-”BEEEEEEEP” “MEEEPahhh”
Ok that’ll be $23.09 tonight, I’m sorry if the ‘scooter party’ in the street calms down, I might be able to
tell you how much this pizza is before it gets cold.” – Personal experience
The above scenario, is one I am too familiar with, when I am attempting to safely deliver hot food to the
people of Panama City Beach, Florida. I love my job and I love where I live. The scooters making an
obnoxious amount of noise, might be a thorn in my side but isn’t the actual core of the problem. Some
people may defend scooters by saying they are a fun attraction to have and it’s a good way to bring in
Is this the type of thing you want to be known for needing revenue from? You do not have to have a
motorcycle license to rent a scooter. From what I know living and working directly around several
scooter companies, the training sessions are not very long if they bother to have one at all. They hand
out sheets of lengthy scooter rules, things like “Don’t go on back beach road” but most of it get littered
on the ground. When tourists go out and about and drive around its difficult to GPS on a scooter. I don’t
think people make the connection that’s where they are. This is setting them up for dangerous scenarios
as well as those of us using back beach road in vehicles.
The scooters and scoot coupe’s can be fun and entertaining but that’s what they are, entertaining. A
ride for entertainment purposes shouldn’t be held in the public roadway. It causes way to much room
for dangerous errors, by inexperienced and often intoxicated scooter drivers. Other well intending
tourists and locals are using the road for the purpose it’s designed for. It traffic anxiety at an all-time
high for anyone, when you are attempting to leisurely enjoy a drive down front beach road at sunset
and 9 scooters come zipping around the vehicle you are attempted to operate legally. It’s not only a
nuisance but a dangerous nuisance.
The ‘scooter party’ doesn’t feel like they aren’t going to get caught, and often times they don’t. How do
you even pull over 9 scooters at once? The local Authorities have enough on their plate with the many
other things going on during spring break and the rest of the year. Having to combat the scooters is just
out of hand and a waste of our first responder’s talent and time.
Between minor traffic violations to major scooter wrecks, where cars hit scooters and people go up
underneath the cars. Accidents where scooter victims spend the next several weeks in intensive care.
The bad just clearly outweighs the good. I wish things were different because the last thing I like to do is
tell the party to stop. But the scooter party is out of control.
Take into account some of these vivid pictures here by Joe Spedale Jr. and ask yourself if this is the
environment you desire to be around. I wasn’t with Joe when he took these photographs, yet every
image was familiar to me because it’s what on our streets on a daily basis. These people are clearly
doing many things I doubt they would have been doing if they felt there was some repercussions
Two local friends of mine have recently had their cars dented because of minor scooter collisions. This is
a nuisance because now we have to go through the lengthy insurance process to get things fixed.
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Is this the kind of business we want here? I don’t think anyone wants to be the person that has to make
the call to a family of a scooter victim. When we have an incident such as earlier last month when two
scooters collided with two vehicles. Someone had to make the phone call to the families of Larry
Reynolds and Jonathan Sharp, both of Mississippi. Regardless of who is at fault in these scenarios, it’s
setting us up for disaster unless we take action against scooters now before more damage is done. From
where I’m standing it most certainly would make pizza delivering easier for me. I’m a local behind
Commissioner Mike Thomas, and I think the Scooter Party needs to STOP.