Electric scooters popular in NYC yet remain illegal

New Yorkers know that navigating the streets of Manhattan is no easy feat. So we often turn to public transportation, bikes, and even electric scooters.

While e-scooters are all the buzz on the West Coast, they're not legal in New York City. But that doesn't mean they're not growing in popularity.

"We walk more and scooters are great for going about a mile and a half—a little bit too long to walk and too short to jump in a cab for," said Sarah Kaufman, an assistant director at the NYU Rudin Center for Transportation.

She said that overall e-scooters would help New Yorkers get around. But it is a touchy subject, especially since the recent controversy over e-bikes.

"Electric bikes can go pretty fast—over 20 miles an hour in some cases," Kaufman said. "Electric scooters top out at about 15 miles an hour. So you could say that scooters are safer. They're also a lot easier to ride."

Kaufman said police rarely enforce the e-scooter law. An NYPD spokesperson told Fox 5 that officers have the discretion to give out tickets.

If you don't want to hop on board the e-scooter craze, don't worry.

A New York City Department of Transportation spokesperson told Fox 5 e-scooters are not likely to become legal anytime soon but that doesn't mean you won't see them around.