US Tourists Throw E-Scooters Down Rome’s Spanish Steps, Cause Rs 20 Lakh In Damages

‘Rome’s Spanish Steps’ is a UNESCO’s World Heritage Site since 18th century.

A pair of American tourists were fined after one of them was caught on camera hurling an electric scooter down the Spanish Steps in Rome, Italy, and causing a damage of more than $26,000 (Rs 20 lakh) to the world-famous landmark, according to New York Post.

The incident took place on Friday and was captured on camera by a bystander. The video is now going viral on social media. It shows one of the tourists – a man – hurling an electric scooter down the Rome’s Spanish steps followed by the woman doing the same.

She then hurled the scooter two more times “for sheer fun”, according to the Italian-language newspaper La Repubblica, causing several of the marble stairs to break, the Post further said.

The 28-year-old was arrested by police and fined $430 each, along with her 29-year-old male companion who had wheeled his e-scooter down the 18th-century marble steps. Authorities said that the 16th and 29th steps had been cracked and other sections were chipped by the e-scooter.

The two Americans have been banned from the monument. They were allowed to return to their hotel, but their e-scooters were confiscated.

Being a UNESCO’s World Heritage Site since 18th century, visitors to the place are strictly prohibited from sitting on the steps since 2018. It underwent $1.5 million restoration in 2015. The incident occurred two weeks after a Saudi Arabian guest drove a Maserati down the stairwell, according to The Guardian.

Tourist numbers in Rome have returned to pre-pandemic levels, with large groups gathering around cultural landmarks. However, as the tourism sector has recovered, so has the number of tourists who violate the rules and regulations.

Two Dutch tourists were fined $1,063 in April for going into the Trevi fountain, which was a pretty typical event prior to the pandemic. A 39-year-old Argentinian man was charged with violating strict no-fly zone laws after crashing a drone into the top of a landmark monument in central Rome just a few days before, the Post report further reported.

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