The trouble is, electric scooters continue to proliferate and be deposited everywhere along the beachfront, and on private property where they don’t belong.
The solution Borelli and Heinkel have come up with is simple: Impound them and charge the dockless companies a flat fee to pick them up, plus $2 a day storage.
Borelli is co-owner of Boardwalk Electric Rides Pacific Beach/Boardwalk Rides at 4150 Mission Blvd. in the PB Promenade. Heinkel was one of his customers. That’s how their new business got started one day last summer.
“I came in here to get a flat tire fixed for my daughter, and while Dan was fixing it, I turned to go get coffee and a scooter employee had parked scooters so close to his doorway that you had to go around them to get out,” said a miffed Henkel, who, after an unpleasant exchange with the employees, asked Borelli, “Why isn’t someone impounding them?”
Replied Borelli, “They can’t get anyone to do it.”
That prompted the two men to launch a new business retrieving the ubiquitous scooters in July 2018, which has since morphed into Scooter Removal LLC, a free service for property and business owners.
Borelli noted people have become so frustrated by scooters parked on private property, and every which way, that they’ve begun “throwing them in dumpsters.”
Added Heinkel, “They’re ending up in the dump.”
“You’re not even allowed to pull them out of the garbage,” pointed out Borelli. “Once it gets into the garbage — it gets into the landfill.”
Subsequently Heinkel, who’s been towing cars for 25 years, has added collecting errantly parked scooters as well in his flatbed truck that holds about 200 of them.
“People can call us, sign a tow authorization on the spot, and we take the scooter for free,” said Borelli. “We have a long list of private property owners who’ve become frustrated with the lack of response from most of the scooter companies.
“Women have called saying scooters are parked so close to their cars or driveways that they can’t get in or out,” said Heinkel, adding, “I’m doing their job for them.”
The business duo have a temporary storage shed behind the promenade in which they stash confiscated scooters.
“We’ve impounded about 5,000 scooters in six months, about 150 a week, 500 a month,” noted Heinkel.
“We’re taking on new clients every day,” said Borelli.“If [scooter companies] don’t pick them up here, they go out to a storage faculty in Spring Valley.”
Need scooters removed?
Call 858-262-1912 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.