Three men in their late twenties were arrested in downtown Hoboken on Sunday, charged with Driving While Intoxicated (Scooter), DWI School Zone, Reckless Driving, Driving on Sidewalk, and Wrong Way on a One Way.
While in the area of 2nd and Hudson Streets, Hoboken Police Officers Olivera and Milne observed Christos Hantzaras (27) of Summit, Daniel Filipek (27) and Joseph Meier (28) of Cranford, operating electric scooters opposite the flow of traffic.
As the adult men passed the marked patrol car on their scooters, the officers advised them that they couldn’t ride in the direction opposite the flow of traffic. The males ignored the officers’ warning and continued north on Hudson Street.
HPD intercepted the group on 3rd and Hudson Streets, and as the officers approached the males they could smell alcoholic beverage coming from the riders. According to HPD, the riders were observed to be swaying side to side. A field sobriety test was conducted on all three males, which they all failed, and they were subsequently placed under arrest. After being transported to headquarters, they all provided breath samples and found to be above the legal limit.
Hoboken’s pilot program with rideshare scooters ends Wednesday, November 20. The City has yet to reach a conclusion as to whether or not it will reengage in any sort of program beyond that date.
“Understanding the legitimate concerns from residents regarding safety as well as the feedback from many users asking for e-scooters to continue,” said Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla, “I’ve asked the Chair of the City Council’s Transportation and Parking Subcommittee, Mike Russo and Councilmember Tiffanie Fisher to convene a working committee with my Director of Transportation, Ryan Sharp, to come up with both short term and long term recommendations regarding a potential e-scooter pilot extension and longer term program, along with other shared mobility services.”
According to Lime, Hoboken’s sole remaining scooter rideshare provider, over 640,000 trips have been taken within Hoboken on their scooters by over 70,000 unique riders during the pilot period. During that period, Lime tells hMAG that they have banned more than 500 users from the platform for unsafe or inappropriate riding.
The earliest Hoboken scooter rideshare would reappear the streets after the pilot expires would be after the next City Council meeting on December 4th.