Bill de Blasio has called for greater regulation of e-scooters in New York one day after actress Lisa Banes died from a hit-and-run crash in Manhattan.
The mayor of New York City pointed the finger at the state for legalizing electric scooters last year and said we ‘have to be smart about’ allowing the vehicles to further flood ‘one of the most crowded places on earth.’
De Blasio said the answer lies in ‘regulation, education and enforcement’ as he described Banes’ death as ‘horrible’ and a ‘tragedy.’ Barnes was hit by a scooter of some type 10 days ago – and left with catastrophic head injuries.
NYPD sources told DailyMail.com it is not yet clear what type of scooter struck Banes – whether a motorized foot scooter or a moped-style scooter – leaving her with critical injuries on June 4. She died in a New York City hospital Monday.
New York state legalized the use of electric bicycles and scooters across the state last January, but shared app-based scooter programs remain banned in Manhattan.
Last June, the New York City Council then approved several bills legalizing the private use of electric scooters and bicycles across the five boroughs.
It also announced this April that shared e-scooter companies Bird, Lime, and VeoRide had been selected to take part in a pilot this summer in the Bronx.
Revel-style scooters, which are motorized, are exempt from the Manhattan ban because they are classed as motorcycles or mopeds. These bikes were temporarily banned last year following a string of rider deaths before being reinstated following negotiations with the city and a series of changes being implemented.
It’s not clear which type hit Barnes. There’s no indication that it was a branded Revel scooter.
Bill de Blasio on Tuesday (above) called for greater regulation of e-scooters in New York one day after actress Lisa Banes died 10 days on from a hit-and-run crash in Manhattan
It isn’t clear whether it’s a motorized moped-like bike, like the Revel scooter above left, that hit actress Lisa Barnes, or whether it was a foot-powered motorized scooter, right. Authorities say they’re still investigating (Stock photos)
De Blasio pointed to the state’s lifting of the ban on electric bikes and scooters when asked about Banes’ death and the city’s role in regulating the vehicles.
‘[With] e-bikes and scooters I always offered what I thought was a common sense grassroots view that I heard from so many New Yorkers at town hall meetings,’ he said, listing safety concerns raised such as ‘that we were going to see more and more crowded streets, more and more crowded bike lanes.’
‘These are real types of issues,’ he said.
‘So the state made the decision to legalize the bikes and e-scooters,’ he said.
‘We’re in the process of working out those regulations.
‘It’s always going to be a process of regulation, education, enforcement and pushing really hard to get these pieces right to keep everyone safe.’
He didn’t detail what types of specific regulations he was suggesting.
De Blasio said it was a ‘tough situation’ but if new laws or regulations are needed, they will be introduced.
‘It’s the most crowded place on earth or in the country at least and we’re throwing these new elements in so we have to be smart about it,’ he said.
‘I think the answer is education, enforcement and continuing to refine the regulations to get everything right.’
The mayor pointed to the city’s wrangling with Revel in the past.
‘We had a situation as you mentioned with Revel, we shut them down and said we need to see much clearer safety measures in place. Changes were made,’ he said.
‘But this is something we continue to monitor closely and something we need to keep working on.
‘I’m very troubled when people go against traffic and create danger for themselves and others.
NYPD sources said it is not yet clear what type of scooter struck Banes (above in 2014) – whether a motorized scooter or a moped-style scooter – leaving her with critical injuries on June 4
‘So we are going to keep refining how we regulate, how we enforce but again anytime we believe a particular company is not acting in a way that is safe for New Yorkers we also maintain the option to shut them down and that is something we’re going to continue to look at.’
De Blasio said the apparent rise in road accidents had been caused partly by the pandemic as New Yorkers stopped using public transport due to fears of the virus.
‘We had a global pandemic. People were not comfortable using mass transportation,’ he said.
‘People turned to their cars more than ever… more and more people turned to biking.’
The city is returning to pre-pandemic normalcy, he said, and so the issue will be ‘fixed.’
‘We are in the process of normalization and the process of rebalancing,’ he said.
‘Now we need to get back to the work of getting people back out of their cars and keeping the streets all safe. It can and will be fixed, it will happen.’
De Blasio had his own close call with an electric scooter in the city back in September.
The mayor was struck on the arm by a man who was riding an e-scooter with his seven-year-old daughter as he stepped on to a crosswalk in Lower Manhattan.
De Blasio escaped unscathed during the collision.
Meanwhile, the girl fell off the scooter, with both her and her father suffering minor scratches. They were reportedly not wearing helmets at the time.
New York state legalized the use of electric bicycles and scooters last January, but shared app-based scooter programs are still banned in Manhattan. In June, the New York City Council approved several bills legalizing the private use of electric scooters and bicycles
Revel bikes are exempt from the ban on electric bike and scooter sharing programs in Manhattan because they are classed as motorcycles or mopeds. Revel was temporarily banned last year following a string of rider deaths before being reinstated
At the time the mayor’s office released a statement encouraging New Yorkers to ‘obey traffic signals and wear a helmet.’
The rollout of e-scooters and e-bikes has been a source of much back and forth in New York City.
This April, the city’s Department of Transportation announced Bird, Lime, and VeoRide had been selected for its first e-scooter pilot.
They will each trial 1,000 e-scooters in the Bronx by the summer.
This comes after Governor Andrew Cuomo lifted the state’s ban on electric bikes and scooters last January.
The move spelled a huge win for delivery workers who use electric bikes and scooters for work and complained of being targeted by police officers in the city.
The New York City Council then legalized the private use of electric scooters and bicycles in the city’s five boroughs and announced that e-scooter companies could apply for the shared electric scooter pilot program.
Lisa Banes, 65, was hit while crossing the intersection of Amsterdam Avenue and West 64th Street on the Upper West Side at about 6.30pm on June 4
Under the city bill, e-bikes can travel at up to 25 mph (40 km/h), and e-scooters up to 20 mph (30 km/h).
Shared electric scooter companies are still banned in Manhattan.
However, the city’s docked bike-share program Citi Bike – which includes electric bikes – already has a permit in the city.
Gone Girl and Cocktail actress Banes died Monday – 10 days after she was mowed down in a hit-and-run by a scooter on June 4.
The 65-year-old, from Los Angeles, was on her way to meet her wife for a dinner party on the Upper West Side when she was struck by a rider who blew through a red light.
Banes suffered a traumatic brain injury and had been in critical care at Mount Sinai Morningside hospital before she succumbed to her injuries Monday.
Confirming Banes’ death, a representative told Entertainment Tonight: ‘We are heartsick over Lisa’s tragic and senseless passing.
‘She was a woman of great spirit, kindness and generosity and dedicated to her work, whether on stage or in front of a camera and even more so to her wife, family and friends.’
‘We were blessed to have had her in our lives,’ the rep added.
Banes had been on her way to meet her wife Kathryn Kranhold (right), a former Wall Street Journal writer, for a dinner party on the Upper West Side
Banes starred with Ben Affleck in Gone Girl, playing Marybeth Elliott
Lisa Banes is seen with Tom Cruise in the 1988 film Cocktail (left), and Kathryn Kranhold, Banes’ wife at a book party with author Ken Wells (right)
The force of the scooter’s impact sent Banes flying off the crosswalk. She was rushed by ambulance to Mount Sinai Morningside hospital
The street where Lisa Banes was hit was cordoned off by police on Saturday as cops investigated
NYPD officers were seen guarding the cordon as forensic teams got to work
Witnesses said the scooter rider ran a red light at the intersection of Amsterdam Avenue and West 64th Street and then fled after knocking Banes over.
An NYPD spokesperson said Monday night that no arrests have been made in the case.
The TV and film star, who lives in Los Angeles, had been visiting NYC for the first time since the pandemic.
Kranhold, a former Wall Street Journal writer, last week issued an urgent appeal for the public to come forward with any information about the hit-and-run.
‘We have several days ahead of us to pray for Lisa,’ the worried wife told the Daily News.
‘If anyone has any information about the scooter driver, we ask them to please call police.’
Born in Ohio and raised in Colorado, Banes attended Julliard in New York, world renowned as a performing arts school, before launching prolific acting career, according to the
She married Kranhold at an intimate ceremony about four years ago at City Hall.
Reacting to the news last night, Banes’ friend and singer Jill Sobule shared a photo of the pair together in a book store, tweeting: ‘Just busted. Lisa Banes was magnificent, hilarious, and big-hearted – always helped me though the hard times. She was so beloved by so many.’
Seth McFarlane, the creator of The Orville in which Banes appeared, also paid tribute to the actress.
He tweeted: ‘I am deeply saddened at the news of Lisa Banes’ passing. We had the good fortune to work with her on The Orville this past year.
‘Her stage presence, magnetism, skill, and talent were matched only by her unwavering kindness and graciousness toward all of us.’
Seth McFarlane, the creator of The Orville in which Banes appeared, paid tribute to the actress
Reacting to the news last night, Banes’ friend and singer Jill Sobule shared a photo of them together in a book store
Banes is best known for her role as Marybeth Elliott, the mother of Rosamund Pike’s character in Gone Girl, which also starred Ben Affleck.
She also appeared in 1980s blockbusters including Cocktail, starring Tom Cruise, and Young Guns, with Kiefer Sutherland and Charlie Sheen.
Banes had since had recurring roles on The King of Queens, Six Feet Under and Nashville, as well as memorable guest roles on The Orville and Desperate Housewives.
Banes also appeared in Broadway plays including ‘Present Laughter’ and ‘High Society.’
She scooped up a Theatre World Award in 1981 for the off-Broadway play ‘Look Back in Anger’ and an Obie in 1982 for her performance in ‘My Sister in This House.’
Banes is seen in character as Lady Tremaine in the Disney series Once Upon A Time (left) and at the premiere of Gone Girl in New York in 2014 (right)
Banes with Christina Ricci in the 2002 movie Pumpkin
Banes scooped up a Theatre World Award in 1981 for the off-Broadway play ‘Look Back in Anger’ and an Obie in 1982 for her performance in ‘My Sister in This House’
‘She’s a great character,’ friend Cynthia Crossen told the Post last week.
‘She’s funny. She’s fun. She’s vibrant. She’s just a person of many talents and interests.’
The fatal crash comes as traffic fatalities in New York hit a seven-year high.
As the pandemic emptied the roads of traffic, many drivers began speeding dangerously.
At least 243 people died in traffic crashes in New York City in 2020 — making it the deadliest year on record since Mayor Bill de Blasio introduced his signature ‘Vision Zero’ plan to improve street safety in 2014.
E-scooters are ‘100 times more dangerous than bicycles’
YouTube star Emily Hartridge was riding an e-scooter too fast with an underinflated tyre when she was killed in a crash with a lorry, a coroner has ruled
E-scooters are the new craze in cities across the world, hailed as environmentally friendly and convenient for busy workers.
But a study by Transport for London, based on US data, found riders needed hospital treatment after accidents every 3.1 years on average, with many suffering head or neck injuries.
TfL said comparisons with the US were difficult, but the number of cyclists killed or seriously hurt in London was 2.7 per one million journeys ‘or roughly 100 times fewer injuries than expected in US e-scooter studies’.
One of the most well-known fatalities involved YouTube star and TV presenter Emily Hartridge who was riding an e-scooter too fast and with an under-inflated tyre when she was killed in a crash with a lorry.
The 35-year-old died instantly of her injuries following the collision in Battersea, south London last July.
Ms Hartridge was on her way to a fertility clinic when she tragically became the first person in the UK to have been involved in a fatal crash on an e-scooter in July 2019.
At the time, e-scooters were illegal to ride in the UK other than on private land with permission, but they were given the green light by the Department for Transport in 2020.
YouTube star Emily Hartridge, 35, lost her life in a collision with a lorry as she circled the roundabout while riding an e-scooter bought for her by her boyfriend Jacob Hazell, 28, as a birthday present less than a week before
The presenter was killed after the e-scooter she was riding was involved in a collision with a HGV in Battersea, south west London last year (pictured, the scene of the crash)
In September, an inquest heard that charity campaigner Barrie Howes died when he lost control of his e-scooter in Chatham, Kent.
The 57-year-old had decided to use the vehicle in the early days of the pandemic after the Government advised people to avoid public transport.
He flew off and, despite wearing a helmet, was found by a passer-by suffering from brain injuries.
Meanwhile in Wales a 55-year-old man died when his electric scooter hit a parked car in September.
Julian Thomas was pronounced dead at the scene in Port Tennant, Swansea, following the late-night incident.
Earlier this month, Met police chief Simon Ovens blasted e-scooters as ‘death traps’, saying that they should not have been backed by TfL.
On June 7, TfL rolled out a new hire scheme, giving citizens the chance to ride e-scooters around the capital at up to 12.5mph.
TfL hailed the 12-month rental scheme as a key part of the city’s sustainable future and post-pandemic recovery.
In 2018, there were four recorded e-scooter collisions in London, which rose to 32 in 2019.
Scotland Yard recorded more than 200 incidents involving them last year. The price of an e-scooter can start at around £350, with some high-end models selling for nearly £1,000. Their speed is capped at 15.5mph but they can be modified to race at up to 70mph.
A study of scooter accidents in Austin, Texas, in 2019 found that nearly half of the 190 riders injured sustained head injuries.
While at two hospitals in Southern California, the vehicles left 249 people in the emergency room over a 12-month period.
Another study by Portland’s Bureau of Transportation found the e-scooter injury rate to be 2.2 accidents per 10,000 miles, this is more than 40 times the national average for motorbikes (0.05 per 10,000 miles), and more than 20 times the national average for cars (0.1 per 10,000).
Meanwhile police data in London released last month revealed that e-scooters had been deployed in hundreds of offences in the capital, including assaults, burglaries and anti-social behaviour.
Throw the book at him! Moment rider flees from police as they try to confiscate his e-scooter – and a frustrated officer hurls his clipboard after him
by William Cole
A brazen man was spotted fleeing police on his e-scooter down a busy central
Footage shows the man moments before having a heated argument with several police officers when they attempt to confiscate his scooter for illegal use in the capital city.
The Met Police have been cracking down on unlawful riders taking over pavements and committing other offences.
However in a second clip, the man is seen back on his scooter making a dash down the road near Marble Arch.
A police officer frantically tries to catch the rider – even throwing his clipboard at the man whilst in pursuit – but the man appears to make an escape.
A brazen man was spotted fleeing police on his e-scooter down a busy central London street – seconds after being filmed having the vehicle seized
A police officer frantically tries to catch the rider – even throwing his clipboard at the man whilst in pursuit – but the man appears to make an escape
The incident happened at around 11am on June 14 just metres from busy Park Lane traffic.
The video was shared by @ruidoloco1 on social media and online users were left amused by the police officer’s futile chase of the e-scooter rider.
One commented: ‘You could say they threw the book at him lol,’ referring to the officer throwing his notepad at the e-scooter.
Another person added: ‘Man dashed a piece of paper thinking it would slow him down.’
Another person commented: ‘The scooter wasn’t even that fast and he still got away from that police lol.’
Another individual complained about London’s police on e-scooters: ‘How can they put electric scooters on the streets for people to pay to use but not allowed their own really makes sense [sic].’
The Metropolitan police have launched a crackdown on people illegally riding e-scooters in London, seizing more than 800 vehicle so far this year.
Electric scooter trials are currently being rolled out in towns and cities across the country, including Canterbury and London. A 12-month rental scheme began in the capital on June 7.
But while e-scooters can be bought legally, in London they can only be used legally on private land with the owner’s permission. Use on pavement or roads is not permitted.
Those found riding a private e-scooter could also lose six points on their current or future driver’s licence and be fined up to £300.
The Metropolitan police have launched a crackdown on people illegally riding e-scooters in London, seizing multiple vehicles and taking them off the street
E-scooters can be bought legally but in London, they can only be used legally on private land with the owner’s permission. Use on pavement or roads is not permitted
There are also penalties for offences including mobile phone, going through red lights and drink driving – similarly to car drivers – that could amount to court imposed fines or even imprisonment.
A recent study by Transport for London (TfL) found that e-scooters could be 100 times more dangerous than bicycles.
Police data released last month showed that e-scooters have been used in hundreds of offences in London, including assaults, burglaries and anti-social behaviour.
Met Police said: ‘The riding of e-scooters on London’s roads and pavements remains illegal and potentially dangerous.
‘Under current legislation, e-scooters can only be driven on private land.
‘The Met’s Roads and Transport Policing Command continues to conduct operations across the capital to engage with e-scooter users, taking enforcement action where necessary.’
MailOnline has approached the Met Police for comment.