Electric scooters have sprung up in numerous cities across France in recent months, but not everyone is a fan. In Lyon, opponents of the popular devices have begun spray-painting them pink and covering up the barcodes, preventing users from unlocking them.

Social media users shared photos of the vandalised scooters in early June.


Social media users in Lyon, France posted photos of scooters whose barcodes had been covered by spray paint.

The latest scooter casualties highlight the division between proponents who see the devices as an environmentally-friendly alternative to cars and detractors who argue that they clutter streets and pose a safety risk to pedestrians. 

In May, nearly two dozen electric scooters were fished out of the Saône River in Lyon, likely tossed in by frustrated locals.
Sea Shepherd France, an environmental group in Lyon, fished out 22 scooters from Saône River in May.

Paris tightens scooter regulation

In Paris, where scooters frequently compete with bikes and cars for space, authorities have begun tightening regulation. The devices will be banned from parks, and from being left on sidewalks, beginning in July. Mayor Anne Hidalgo also plans to limit the number of scooters in the capital by issuing licenses to two or three scooter operators. Twelve companies currently provide the service in Paris.

On June 10, a man was fatally struck by a van in Paris while riding an electric scooter. It was the second death involving scooters in France, after a pedestrian died after being hit by a scooter in the nearby surburb of Levallois-Perret.