Electric scooters, which are high-tech devices commonly known as e-scooters, are all the rage these days and are especially popular in large cities and college towns. According to the National Association of City Transportation Officials, nearly 39 million trips were taken on this type of scooter. By 2025, the global market for e-scooters is expected to reach up to $50 billion, according to USA Today.
While e-scooters provide a type of transportation that cuts down on greenhouse gas emissions, some people are concerned about their widespread use. In fact, some cities, like San Francisco and Nashville, have banned the scooters. This is primarily due to the fact that electric scooters are the cause of an alarming number of accidents.
Many of these scooter accidents result in injury and even death. If you would like to know more, here are the answers to four frequently asked questions about scooter accidents.
1. How Dangerous Are Electric Scooters?
According to a recent investigation by Consumer Reports, there were 1,545 scooter accidents in 2018. This number could be much higher. Dozens of people in these scooter accidents have needed emergent medical care. Some of the most common types of injuries associated with scooter accidents include:
Bumps and bruises
One study done in Southern California showed that a majority of scooter riders ended up in the emergency room because they were injured from falling. Other riders were injured as a result of either hitting something while riding the scooter, or they were hit by a car or other moving object.
Forty percent of those who ended up in the emergency room suffered head injuries. Five of the patients with head injuries had brain bleeds. According to safety regulations by scooter companies, riders must be at least 18 years old. However, in Southern California, 11 percent of the riders who ended up in the emergency room were under the age of 18.
Besides injuries, scooter accidents have been blamed for a handful of deaths. The latest statistics from Consumer Reports shows that eight deaths have been attributed to scooter accidents. In order to reduce the chances of injury, those riding an electric scooter should be at least 18 years old and always wear a helmet.
Riders should ensure that the brakes work properly before hopping on the scooter. Those who have never ridden an e-scooter before should practice riding it in an area without a lot of people. This is not only for the safety of the rider but for the safety of others as well.
2. What Are Common Causes for Scooter Accidents?
The top speeds for electric scooters range from 15 to 30 mph, according to USA Today. While this doesn’t seem very fast, it is fast enough to lose control and have an accident. Here are some of the most common causes of scooter accidents:
Road hazards. The scooter hits a pothole, tree branch, or another object in the path of the scooter.
Swervings. The rider needs to swerve, which causes the rider to lose their balance.
Doorings. The rider of the scooter runs into the open door of a vehicle.
In cities where electric scooters are ridden, sidewalks and roadways are not equipped for these newer modes of transportation. Some riders aren’t sure of the traffic laws when riding a scooter. This confusion adds to the chances of getting into an accident.
One more cause of scooter accidents is malfunction. The most common types of scooter malfunctions include brake problems, flat tires, handlebar collapses, and problems with the motor.
3. What Should I Do If I Have Been Injured in a Scooter Accident?
If you are the rider of a scooter and you get into an accident due to scooter malfunction, you should consider contacting a personal injury lawyer. If you are a pedestrian and you get injured by someone riding a scooter, you should also contact a personal injury lawyer.
In some cases, there are two people who are riding an electric scooter. If you are a passenger and the driver of the scooter causes an accident, this could be considered a personal injury case. One more instance of a possible personal injury case is riding a scooter that hits a pothole. The entity who neglected to fix the pothole could be held responsible.
In any of these instances, it’s important to gather as much information and evidence about the scooter accident as you can. If you need medical attention, save all copies of your paperwork, including receipts and bills. All of this information will help in the event you decide to file a personal injury lawsuit.
4. Who Should I Contact for Help?
If you have been injured in a scooter accident, either as a rider, passenger, or a pedestrian, contact Garrison Law Firm for a free consultation with a member of our legal team. Serving the Metro Phoenix area, our experienced personal injury lawyers have represented injured people throughout Arizona since 1994.