Car Accidents Involving Scooters – Everything You Need To Know (Part 1)
Scooter use is on the rise thanks to electric scooter rideshare companies like Bird, Lime and Skip, but many emergency room doctors are warning that these seemingly harmless vehicles are just as dangerous as other motorized vehicles. Whether you take advantage of rideshare services or own your own scooter, this two-part guide provides practical tips to keep you safe and arms you with valuable information in the event you are in a scooter accident.
The Surge in Scooter Popularity
Scooter rideshare companies Bird and Lime have introduced rentable e-scooters in over 100 cities and given over 20 million rides since they stormed the streets over one year ago. These vehicles provide an inexpensive mode of transportation both in terms of the purchase price or rental fees, and many see scooters as an opportunity to get you that last mile or short distance, especially in heavily populated areas where parking is difficult or expensive. However, part of the danger of scooters lies in peoples’ misconception that scooters are simply a fun, recreational toy.
Scooters—A Target For Accidents?
Scooter riders are at an increased risk for accidents for many reasons:
- inexperienced riders;
- lack of helmet use;
- mechanical problems;
- absence of bike lanes or lanes that are too narrow; and
- ignorance of scooter laws, which vary between municipalities (e.g., scooters permitted on sidewalks in Denver, but only bike lanes or streets in California).
Safety Tips for Scooters
You should always be cautious when riding a scooter, even more than when you drive a car. The small size of a scooter alone makes it more difficult for other drivers to see you on the road. To stay safe, follow the below tips:
- wear a helmet;
- know the laws, especially where you can ride;
- avoid driving in others’ blind spots;
- wear bright-colored clothes;
- follow general traffic laws;
- use turn signals or arm signals when turning;
- be especially careful of left-hand turns and intersections;
- no lane splitting;
- beware of potholes or debris in the road, which are especially; problematic for small scooter wheels; and
- never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
If you are going to use a rideshare scooter:
- check weight limits and any other riding requirements;
- do a safety check of brakes, lights, frame and wheels; and
- read the terms of service so you understand what rights you are giving up, which may include the right to file a lawsuit in court.
If you have been injured in a scooter accident or have questions about a personal injury settlement, call the experienced staff at the Kelly Law Team for a free consultation 602-283-4122.