SEGWAY UPDATE: While I was briefly on jury duty, several readers sent me Segway updates.
Here’s an “Atlanta police are testing the Segway” article from CNN.com.
As Gary Bridge of Segway explained to me for my LiteWheels article, a big part of Segway’s initial marketing strategy is to get the units in the hands of civil officials, such as the police, before they begin offering it to the general public.
Regarding their government sales, Bridge says that the goal there is try to establish “the proper Segway etiquette: how you have to behave when you come to a crowded street.”
Bridge says that Segway’s fear is that if they initially sold the units to the mass market, “kids being kids, are going to do things with it that are bad, and then we’re going to get blamed for it. So we won’t sell to kids, until we have a very, very clear welcome on the sidewalks.” Which is probably a good thing, as injury lawyers are already advertising their intentions to sue the pants and the deep pockets off of Segway when and if the inevitable accidents start to occur. By carefully educating the public, Segway may both reduce those risks, and their exposure to lawsuits.
And considering that sites such as this one already exist, I can’t say I blame them.