Lyft exploring electric scooter service in San Francisco: report

Ride-sharing company Lyft is reportedly mulling the possibility of launching a pay-per-use electric scooter service in San Francisco, where city officials are said to be finalizing regulations tied to the application process.

A consulting firm representing Lyft approached public officials in San Francisco to discuss the permit process, The Information reported. Lyft is also developing electric scooter prototypes for potential use in the city.

Lyft representatives declined to comment on the report.

Lyft’s apparent interest in an electric scooter service came weeks after a trio of startups debuted similar pay-per-ride programs in San Francisco, where regulations on their use do not currently exist. The unauthorized launches created a variety of safety concerns, as users left the electric scooters in the middle of sidewalks or used them without helmets, Engadget reported.

Officials in San Francisco are in the process of developing an application process outlining rules for companies that launch electric scooter programs.

Once launched, a pilot program in the city would grant permits to as many as five companies to operate a total of up to 2,500 scooters over the next 24 months, TechCrunch reported.

The electric scooter programs would operate similarly to bike-sharing initiatives, such as CitiBike in New York City. Currently, companies offering scooter-sharing services include Spin, Bird, Lime and Skip.