Matthew Minner | March 31, 2021 | Personal Injury
Over the last couple of years, an e-scooter revolution has taken place in American cities. In fact, as recently as 2018, an estimated 38 million e-scooter trips were taken in the country. This represents a significant share of the micro-mobility craze.
Many of these scooters are owned by scooter-share companies like Lime or Bird. These two companies launched their services in Lexington in the fall of 2019. While they were initially welcomed, there have been questions about their safety. Within a week of the launch, one Lime rider was injured in an accident. Many others have either been hit by cars or injured in falls since that time.
To be sure, safety issues related to e-scooters don’t only apply to scooter-share companies. More and more individuals are buying their own e-scooters to help them get from point A to point B as efficiently as possible. Considering the safety implications of e-scooters is something everyone—both owners and renters—needs to take seriously.
Types of Common E-Scooter Injuries and What Causes Them
Now that e-scooters have been on our cities’ roads and sidewalks for several years, evidence suggests some e-scooter injuries are more common than others. A CDC report, for example, highlighted the fact that over fifty percent of e-scooter injuries affect a rider’s head.
The obvious answer to that problem, of course, is that more riders should wear helmets. For their part, scooter-sharing companies often strongly encourage riders to wear a helmet. However, enforcement is difficult.
Other injuries commonly involve the wrists and shoulders as riders try to catch themselves before they fall.
There are also a number of common themes when it comes to e-scooter accidents, including:
- Drivers of cars, trucks, and motorcycles not paying attention to scooters
- Inexperienced riders making mistakes
- Potholes or other poor road conditions
- Scooter malfunction
Scooter malfunction is an issue for scooter-sharing companies since multiple users might ride the same scooter in one day. With that much wear and tear, scooters are bound to break down. While Lime, Bird, and others do their best to maintain their scooters, it might be difficult to keep up with growing demand.
What You Should Do If You Are Injured
There are many scenarios in which you might get hurt in an e-scooter accident.
The steps you should take if you are injured depend on a number of factors, including:
- Whether or not the scooter is owned by a scooter sharing company
- Whether or not it is privately owned
- Who is likely at fault
If you were injured because a scooter you rented malfunctioned, you will most likely be dealing with the scooter rental company and their insurance company. While this might sound straightforward, it can be daunting. These companies will do everything in their power to minimize your damages and put the blame on you.
A third party, such as the driver of a car or even a pedestrian, may have caused your scooter accident. The city could even be at fault if the road is not maintained as it should be. Regardless, it is in your best interest to hire a qualified personal injury lawyer after your scooter accident. A skilled lawyer will be able to establish fault and work to maximize the compensation you can collect.