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Some electric scooter companies roll out of town, for now

Lyft, Lime, Razor, Bird and Spin rethink their fleet presence in Denver amid COVID-19 pandemic.

DENVER — In an effort to keep their riders healthy during the outbreak of COVID-19, scooter companies are temporarily rolling their scooter fleets out of town. 

With ongoing concerns surrounding the escalation of COVID-19, five scooter companies operating in Denver including Lyft, Lime, Razor, Bird and Spin, have all announced changes regarding their presence in Denver.

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The electric, two-wheeled scooters first arrived in the Mile High City in June of 2018, courtesy of Lime. Since then, their numbers and popularity have grown — that is, until the continued spread of COVID-19 caused enough concern about riders spreading germs on the scooters that the companies have changed their operations.  

Lime announced March 21 that it would “begin winding down and pausing service” in all of their markets, including Denver, but exempting South Korea. This action, according to Lime’s statement on their website, is to “help people stay put and stay safe.”

Bird told 9NEWS through a statement that it will reduce its fleet size in the area to deter “non-critical mobility.” Bird also mentioned that their “...decision to reduce the fleet size is very fluid as the response to and recommendations regarding COVID-19 evolve.”

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Both Lime and Bird said their removals and reductions are temporary.

Not all companies have pulled their scooter fleets. In statements to 9NEWS, both Razor and Lyft have confirmed that they are staying put in the Mile High City, at least for the time being.

Razor said that it is maintaining its position in Denver as an essential activity in compliance with Gov. Jared Polis’ stay-at-home order. In an effort to help those who are in need of the public transportation provided by scooters, Razor said it will “...shift scooter deployment toward locations such as grocery stores, pharmacies and other ‘essential’ businesses that remain open under this stay-at-home directive.”

Lyft said it's keeping the scooters to benefit those with essential travel needs an the company is striving to ease fears by increasing their cleaning protocol, as well as keeping their riders updated on CDC guidance.

Lyft and Razor both added that they will monitor the situation closely and frequently.

In a Medium update posted March 24, Spin said it will “continue operating in cities where we can make an impact and where the city is supporting our efforts to provide a transportation option for essential purposes,” which includes Denver. 

Spin has paused their operations in other markets. 

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