CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A Charlotte city councilman is voicing concern after he said he witnessed what is believed to be the city’s first major scooter accident.
Tariq Bokhari, councilman for district six, said he was yards away from the intersection at South Brevard and East 4th Street Tuesday afternoon when a woman riding a scooter the wrong way down a one-way street and a van collided.
"I was like, ‘Oh no, oh no, oh no,’ and then just dead center, smack hit and just, I froze,” Bokhari said.
Medic reported one patient was taken to the hospital with minor injuries related to the accident. The councilman said he called 911 before sharing what happened in a Facebook Live video.
"I didn't want to sensationalize it, but we're literally in the 11th hour of deciding how to regulate these things, and I just wanted everyone to see what I was seeing and feeling at the time,” Bokhari said.
The scooters rolled onto Charlotte streets in May without prior city approval. Since then, the city started a pilot program to collect data and learn how to regulate the scooters.
"You can't regulate stupidity, and unfortunately, I think that was a case today of stupidity,” Bokhari said.
The accident in uptown came as the city council weighs what rules and ordinances should be in place to protect riders and drivers.
“Someone will die on an e-scooter before the end of this calendar year," Councilman Larken Egleston recently said at a meeting.
Earlier in September, a 24-year-old reportedly riding a lime scooter in Dallas, TX, fell off, called for help and died hours later in surgery. Last week, a man in Washington, D.C. riding a Lime scooter was hit and trapped under an SUV. He later died at the hospital
Bokhari said the close call with the uptown accident Tuesday made him realize how important the discussion to regulate the scooters is within the city.
"She should really count herself incredibly lucky that she lived through that experience,” Bokhari said of the scooter rider.
According to the city of Charlotte’s E-Scooter Share Program, it's recommended riders wear a helmet, watch out for pedestrians, obey all traffic laws, ride sober, and make eye contact with motorists before merging and crossing in front of vehicles.