Delivery Scooters Face Crackdown in Major Cities Amid Safety Concerns and Legal Violations

BOSTON, MA – As the demand for fast food delivery rises, cities like Boston are seeing a surge in delivery couriers zipping through traffic on scooters, motorcycles, and mopeds. This trend has raised concerns among city officials about safety and legality, prompting crackdowns on delivery companies to ensure drivers operate within the law.

Similar concerns have emerged in other major cities like New York and Washington, D.C., where warning letters have been issued, illegally registered vehicles have been seized, and special patrols have been launched to enforce speed limits. The pushback is not unique to the United States, with crackdowns also taking place in London and other British cities.

In response to the crackdowns, delivery companies like DoorDash, Grubhub, and Uber have committed to working with city officials to ensure the safety and legality of their drivers. Boston officials, in a recent letter to these companies, expressed concerns about the unlawful and dangerous operation of motorized vehicles, demanding explanations on how driver safety can be ensured.

Authorities in various cities have been taking action to address the issue. In New York City, thousands of scooters and mopeds have been seized this year, with over 200 illegal vehicles crushed in a recent operation. Washington, D.C., has launched a program called Operation Ride Right to ensure compliance with traffic laws among two-wheeled vehicle drivers.

While many delivery drivers, often immigrants from various countries, are simply trying to make a living and provide a fast food service to customers, concerns about safety and legality persist. Some drivers have been seen operating unregistered vehicles and disregarding traffic laws, posing risks to pedestrians and other drivers.

As the focus on enforcement shifts towards two-wheeled delivery vehicles, experts like Hilary Robinson from Northeastern University highlight the challenges of balancing low-wage labor with safety regulations. The shift to motorcycles and other two-wheeled vehicles has been driven by the need to reduce traffic congestion caused by car deliveries during the pandemic.

Drivers like Luis López, a delivery driver from the Dominican Republic, acknowledge the issues within the industry and the importance of following the law. Despite the challenges, there are ongoing efforts by officials and delivery companies to address the concerns raised by the surge in delivery drivers using two-wheeled vehicles.