SCOOTER HATERS: Electric scooters attacked by angry Californians

Santa Monica – VIJAY SHAH via FOX News and other sources

The U.S. state of California is well known for being at the vanguard of revolutionary new technologies, especially if they are environmentally friendly. Its also the birthplace of many a technological trend that has spread across the world. According to Fox News, however, there is one new eco-transport trend that has not only irritated some locals in the Golden State, it’s pushed them to commit vandalism against the objects fuelling that same trend.

Electric two-wheeled scooters, usually popular with youngsters, have become the latest must-have kind to the environment mode of transport. A firm called Bird even has public banks of scooters you can pay to borrow for the day, just like the bicycle docks found in many world cities. But some Californians in the south of the state, sick to death of the new vehicles appearing in random locations and getting in their way, have taken to setting them on fire or throwing them into the Pacific Ocean, Fox News reports.

 

Another report from local paper the Los Angeles Times claims that city hygiene workers in Santa Monica have found several scooters left for dead amidst the spray of the sea and abandoned in public bins. A policeman in the city of Venice even claimed to have seen dumped scooters stacked up high in piles of ten, but the dumping has not been reported to authorities.

Most of the scooters found dumped are branded ones issued by Bird. Marked with the company logo in simple black and white livery, the company rents out the scooters to the public for as little as US $1 a day and the firm currently operates across the United States and in Paris, France. The problem of scooters being dumped and vandalised has become so commonplace that one wit opened up a Instagram account, Birdgraveyard (@birdgraveyard), that chronicles and celebrates the various unfortunate final resting places of the two-wheelers across California.

A spokesperson with the scooter firm told Fox: “We do not support the vandalism or destruction of any property and are disappointed when it takes place,’

‘Nor do we support the encouragement, celebration or normalization of this behavior.”

Bird appealed for people who spot damaged vehicles to report the sightings to the company directly.

Opponents of scooter rental schemes like Bird’s say the vehicles are often carelessly left in public places and they are an eyesore. Some cities in the US originally opposed Bird expanding into their streets but relented and allowed them in, due to their enviro-credentials. The Californian town of Beverly Hills, however voted to ban scooters for six months, citing safety concerns. The town’s council member, Lili Bosse, said last month: “If you imagine just walking on the sidewalk and somebody on a scooter at 15 miles an hour hits you, it can be fatal…”

SOURCES:

Vijay Shah { विजय }, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/VShah1984

Chris, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/Chris_1791

“Southern Californians are tossing electric scooters into ocean, burning them: report” – Fox News, Greg Norman and Associated Press, Fox News channel/FOX News Network, LLC. (13 August 2018) http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2018/08/13/southern-californians-are-tossing-electric-scooters-into-ocean-burning-them-report.html?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

“Bird” – Bird https://www.bird.co/

IMAGE CREDIT:

“File:Bird scooters on the sidewalk in San Jose.jpg” – Grendelkhan, Wikimedia Commons (30 May 2018) https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bird_scooters_on_the_sidewalk_in_San_Jose.jpg

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IKEA-N’T BELIEVE IT!: English fans criticised for invading IKEA store after football victory

London – VIJAY SHAH via WIL JONES, Joe and other sources

While yesterday’s 2-0 win by England over Sweden in Samara for the World Cup 2018 was a perfect example of largely orderly and civil sportsmanship, a group of the England team’s supporters have come in for heavy criticism for behaving quite the opposite, after they invaded an IKEA store in London and partied in a show bedroom, with several men jumping on a double bed meant for display to customers visiting the Swedish-owned homeware and furniture store.

 

In videos that has gone viral on social media, a group of half-naked men, swigging beer and in an exuberant mood after the victory that advanced England to the quarter-finals, can be seen converging just inside the entrance of an IKEA store in the Westfield Shopping Centre in Stratford, London.  Chanting the football song “It’s Coming Home”, the men, largely in their twenties and thirties, are shown jumping up and down on the bed, while throwing around cushions and other items on display. In one clip a member of staff pleads with one of the fans to get down from the bed, while another, behind a till, shakes her head in disbelief.

While many on social media expressed surprise at the impromptu celebration-turned-vandalism/store invasion, others have condemned the fans in the IKEA store. One called for them to be named and shamed, and their identities turned over to IKEA and the city’s Metropolitan Police for civil damages and prosecution. They were also accused of bringing both England and football into disrepute and exhibiting hooligan-like behaviour. A small number of commentators however said that the men were merely having fun and that the negative reaction was overkill.

As of the time of publishing, IKEA’s UK retail division appeared to take the incident in their stride, commenting on one of the videos: “We are aware of a small group of fans celebrating the match result in one of our stores. Being both British and Swedish, we were on the edge of our seats during the game and we would like to say ‘grattis!’ (congratulations)”

SOURCES:

Ali Hassan Besher/Facebook.

“England fans criticised for invading IKEA store following victory over Sweden” – Wil Jones, Joe (7 July 2018) https://www.joe.co.uk/news/england-fans-criticised-for-invading-ikea-store-following-victory-over-sweden-188511

محسن, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/KingMo786