Micromobility Devices (MMDs)

Purpose and Scope

Boston University promotes the safe use of micromobility devices (MMDs) for personal transportation, which help meet the university’s transportation and sustainability goals. This guidance helps ensure the safe use, operation, and storage of these devices on campus for Boston University faculty, staff, students, and visitors on university property.

This guidance does not apply to devices powered by internal combustion engines.  This guidance does not apply to wheelchairs, mobility aids, or other mobility devices required by individuals with disabilities, in accordance with applicable law.


Micromobility Device (MMD): For the purposes of this document, includes electric and human powered devices such as bicycles, skateboards, scooters, and other small, wheeled conveyances designed for personal transport. 

University Property: For the purposes of this guidance, “university campus” and “university property” pertain to the Charles River, Fenway, and the Medical Campuses.

 Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL): A third-party laboratory which sets technical standards for product design and construction and is recognized by the U.S. Department of Labor’s, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Examples of independent testing laboratories are UL Solutions (formerly Underwriters Laboratories, Inc.), SGS, and TUV.

Internal Combustion Engine: an engine that generates motive power by the burning of gasoline, oil, or other fuel with air inside the engine, the hot gases produced being used to drive a piston or do other work as they expand.


Guidance and Use

Only MMD’s that are certified and labeled by a NRTL shall be stored, charged, or operated in university owned or leased buildings. For a list of certified NRTLs, see link in resources. The certification of the MMD includes the plug-in charger. Ensure to use only the charger that is designed and was tested with the MMD. When replacing chargers or batteries use only approved and compatible replacements. Avoid aftermarket accessories and replacement parts.

Use MMDs in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions and do not operate devices inside any BU building.

All persons operating MMDs on University Property are to comply with federal and municipal regulations, and university policies. See additional rules and regulations in Massachusetts for eBikes and eScooters in the resources section of this guidance.

Take care to ride safely and respect other road users. In addition to observing local traffic laws, micromobility device users are encouraged to review these safety suggestions provided by the City of Boston at the following link  

Boston University supplies safety resources to employees and students free of charge at the BU Cycle Kitchen.

Stop using the device if the battery emits any unusual odors, there is a change in color, produces too much heat, there is a change in shape, is leaking, or makes unusual noises.  If you observe any of these conditions,  unplug device if safe to do so, move to a safe location outdoors, and call BU Police at (617) 353-2121.


NRTL certified MMDs may only be charged in a student’s residence or an employee’s office. MMDs shall not be charged in communal areas including hallways, lounges, stairwells, lobbies, and bike rooms. MMDs shall not be charged at exterior outlet locations on University Property.

Do not overload electrical circuits. Plug directly to a wall outlet. Do not use power strips or extension cords to charge MMDs. If you have questions regarding the electrical capacity in the area you wish to charge the device, contact Facilities Management & Operations by email.

Adhere to manufacturer requirements when charging your MMD, Additionally, ensure that you charge batteries in a flat, dry area away from direct sunlight, liquids, combustibles, and in an area not to cause a tripping hazard. When charging or storing batteries, keep away from combustibles or anything that could catch fire. Do not continue charging once fully charged.


All devices stored in BU secured bike rooms must be registered with Boston University. Visit the following link for for details. Registration will be denied for any device without visible certification markings from a NRTL.


Please recycle unwanted MMDs especially batteries. Contact Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) at 617-353-4094 with questions regarding proper disposal and recycling. Unwanted batteries for disposal can be dropped off at the EHS office at 704 Commonwealth Avenue, Monday through Friday weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. For other arrangements, call 617-353-4094.

Outdoor Parking on University Property

MMDs may be locked to approved bicycle racks on campus. Shared MMDs such as Bird and Lime devices, must be parked within 5 feet of an approved bicycle rack or at designated zones on campus. MMDs shall not block or partially obstruct pathways, sidewalks, stairways, ramps, or building entrances or exits, or locked to railings or other building structures.

Indoor Parking in University Buildings

MMDs are not to be stored in common areas. They may only be kept in offices, student residences (with co-inhabitant consent), and bike parking rooms. MMDs must not obstruct the safe ingress or egress of any building or access to a building and must not block any university building hallway, stairway, doorway, lobby, vestibule, ramp, or any other part of a buildings egress path or generally disrupt the normal operation of any Boston University facility.

Parking Violations

MMDs found parked or locked in areas other than those expressly stated within this guidance or that may constitute a safety hazard may be impounded without notice. Impounded devices will be held for 90 days during which time their owner may collect them if they can provide proof of ownership. Proof of ownership includes a valid BU Bicycle Permit or a receipt for the purchase of the device, listing its serial number. After 90 days, impounded MMDs may be disposed of or donated to charity.

Abandoned Micromobility Devices

MMDs that appear to be inoperable may be considered abandoned, tagged with a warning, and will be impounded after 3 days. MMDs left in bike rooms over the summer without approval may be impounded without notice.

Impounded Devices

MMDs found in violation of this guidance may be reported to Facilities Management & Operations (FMO) Control Desk at 617-353-2105 24/7. FMO staff will either relocate the device to a safe area in proximity to where it was found or impound the device. If possible, the device will be given to the Dean’s Administrative office of the school where found, or will be placed in storage at FMO. FMO will inform the Control Desk as to the location of the confiscated MMD. The owner may call the FMO Control Desk at 617-353-2105 as to the location of the device to retrieve it providing the appropriate proof of ownership.

Additional Resources