A pair of American tourists were fined after one of them was caught on video hurling an electric scooter down Rome’s Spanish Steps — causing more than $26,000 worth of damage to the world-famous site.
The incident took place last Friday morning and was captured by a bystander.
In the video, an unnamed 29-year-old man is seen wheeling a rental scooter down the 18th century UNESCO World Heritage Site, where visitors were banned from sitting in 2018.
The man’s 28-year-old female companion walking behind him with her own e-scooter then shoves it down the iconic flight of stairs, where it lands with a loud thud, drawing peals of laughter from an onlooker off-camera.
According to the Italian-language newspaper La Repubblica, the woman hurled the scooter two more twice after that “for sheer amusement,” causing some of the marble steps to crack.
Local police later tracked down the couple and fined them the equivalent of $430 each. The two Americans were also banned from the monument. They were then allowed to return to their hotel, while their scooters were confiscated, reported Corriere Della Sera.
The incident comes two weeks after a 37-year-old engineer visiting Rome from Saudi Arabia drove a rental Maserati SUV down the Spanish Steps, reported The Guardian.
When the tourist was bust by police in Milan days later, he blamed the incident on his GPS device, which he claimed sent him down the wrong street. The unnamed man was charged with damaging the monument and agreed to pay for its repair.
Officials said the luxury vehicle cracked the monument’s 16th and 29th steps, and chipped other sections of the staircase as well.
In 2015, the Spanish Steps underwent a $1.6 million restoration to make it look the way it did in 1725, when it was unveiled by Pope Benedict XIII.