The increasing use of electric scooters—including shared electric scooters that are becoming more and more popular on city streets—has led to an onslaught of electric scooter accidents. Plaintiffs across the country have taken scooter-sharing companies to task, as both riders and pedestrians are subject to injuries from these popular modes of transportation.
Complaints of gross negligence by scooter companies and scooter manufacturers are not unusual and are set to grow in number as more and more people become injured. Considered a godsend by some and a dangerous nuisance by others, shared scooters seem to be here to stay. If you have been involved in an electric-scooter-related accident, contact our Westmoreland County electric scooter accident attorney now to discuss your legal options.
Causes of Electric Scooter Claims
There are a bevy of issues that can crop up and cause electric scooter accidents. Most riders are ill-prepared to ride these vehicles anyway; some just hop on and take off without any practice, navigating busy streets without proper advance training. Most don’t wear a helmet, and it is not required that they do, leaving the head completely vulnerable to dangerous impact if the rider falls or is thrown off. The design of the scooter lends it easily to upset, since it is basically a skateboard on two wheels with a set of handlebars. Terrain can be unforgiving to the scooter; sidewalks are sometimes uneven or riddled with potholes, easily setting the stage for dangerous accidents. Scooters are also small, making them less visible in traffic.
Product defects and lack of maintenance (so far unregulated in most places) can also result in:
- Failed brakes
- Stuck throttles
- Exploding batteries
- Inoperative lights
- Flat tires
- Broken or snapped handlebars
- Broken decks
- Broken innertubes
All of these issues can cause the scooter operator to become involved in a serious accident on the street, sidewalk or bike path.
Electric Scooter Injuries
Electric scooter accidents can cause a myriad of injuries to the body. Riders have no protection that they would enjoy in a passenger car, such as a steel cage and air bags. Scooters travel at speeds of up to 15 miles per hour, so the impact of being thrown from one of these vehicles can be quite significant, leading to traumatic brain injury, spinal cord damage, open fractures, and other serious problems. Pedestrians are also at risk of being struck by a fast-moving scooter, resulting in injuries ranging from broken bones to traumatic brain injuries, depending on the severity of the collision. There have even been several instances of scooter accidents resulting in death and long-term disabilities and impairments.