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Bird scooters now in North Tonawanda

Dunkirk and Olean also have the scooters.

NORTH TONAWANDA, N.Y. — Another mode of transportation is coming to North Tonawanda. 

An electric scooter company called Bird delivered scooters to Western New York late Saturday night. They are already in big cities. 

This is not the first time they're coming to Western New York. Dunkirk and Olean also have the scooters. 

The electric scooter company reached out to the North Tonawanda Mayor Austin Tylec for approval early in the year. 

"I thought it was a very interesting, neat initiative that we could take on for local transportation. It's environmentally friendly, it's cheap, it's fun," Tylec said. 

It also comes at no cost for the city. Bird is entirely responsible for the 20 scooters, which will be in public areas such as Gateway and Gratwick parks. 

"They're going to see how much use there is and then they'll expand from there. They said we could have up to 75 to 100," Tylec said. 

All of these have a tracker, and they will stop working for anyone trying to ride them outside North Tonawanda city limits, though the city isn't allowing riders to head to Niagara Falls Boulevard for safety reasons. 

So how do the scooters work? 

All you have to do is download the Bird app. Create an account and connect your credit card, then scan the QR code on the scooter to start it. 

You will be charged $1, and then 49 cents per mile. 

Bird also has discounted fares for a plethora of groups including low-income riders, veterans, and seniors. There's also free rides for health care workers and first responders. 

"We think people will be pretty responsible with them and it's a trial. We'll see how it goes for a year. If it's not something the community is receptive to in the end, then maybe we'll get them out of here," Tylec said. 

"We're always looking toward new ways to find public transportation. ... It's not a subway. It's not a bus, but it doesn't mean we can't find alternatives."

Tylec says both the City of Buffalo and City of Niagara Falls are also in talks with Bird to bring the scooters there as well. 

The scooters will only be in North Tonawanda for about five weeks before the winter weather comes. 

Then they'll be back when it's warm out again. 

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