The scooter rider who weaved across a busy Dallas highway is getting lots of attention for a stunt that many are calling stupid and illegal.
Governor Greg Abbott is among those commenting on the viral scooter video from I-35E shared on Monday. He said there needs to be regulations that prevent stunts that put everyone one on the road in danger.
However, the law already says scooter riders cannot ride on the interstate. It's illegal to drive scooters on a road or highway where the speed limit is above 30 miles per hour.
A Monday morning ride was just as wild for Joshua Weatherl, the voice behind the dash camera video. He says it’s the most outrageous thing he’s ever captured on his dash camera, which he installed to help in case of an accident.
Weatherl was on his way to work heading northbound on I-35E near Victory Park when he spotted the scooter rider nonchalantly changing lanes. The slow-moving traffic tapped the breaks for the incoming foreign object with a max speed of 17 miles an hour on a freeway with a posted speed limit of 70.
“He seemed totally calm. He was looking over his shoulder,” Weatherl replied. “So he was able to get on to the highway, move all the way over and then somehow exit, which is what he was doing when I got him on video.”
The scooter rider had on headphones, a backpack and crazy confidence in his scooter skills.
“If I had to venture a guess, I’d have to say this might be his normal commute. I’ve never seen him before, but he looked very comfortable,” Weatherl said. “I hope it doesn’t spark copycats.”
Retweeting the FOX 4 News video, Gov. Abbott said: “I believe in less government. But allowing these scooters on crowded interstate highways is bad government… Action is needed.”
“I’m glad that it’s getting the attention that it deserves,” Weatherl said. “As much as I’m afraid of capitalism, I think this is the kind of thing that you get when you have little to no regulation around an industry like this.”
Accident statistics from the city of Dallas show there have been several mishaps in the past eight months under the scooter pilot program. There have been 156 reported ER visits, 30 hospital admissions, 10 ICU cases and 1 fatality.
Weatherl questions the big picture.
“It does pose the bigger question of… you are not allowed to ride them on sidewalks. Dallas is not really a bike-friendly city,” he said. “So what is the intended use for these motorized scooters?”
Dallas police were called about the scooter rider. But by the time they arrived, the rider could not be located so there was nothing for them to investigate.