Law Office of Michael R. De La Paz

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Scooters place riders, pedestrians at risk

You may have wondered why someone didn't think of it sooner. Renting electric scooters through an app on your phone is the newest craze spreading through cities across the country. The concept is simple. You locate the nearest e-scooter on your app and use a special code to unlock it. Then you ride it wherever you need to go, lock it with your app and leave it for the next rider.

There are many things to love about e-scooters. You don't need to obtain a special license, pay for car insurance or worry about parking. They are convenient, fun to use and good for the environment. However, according to recent data, they are also a growing danger, whether you are riding one or walking near them.

Rise in injuries

Apparently, when a city welcomes an e-scooter business, it also sees an increase in emergency room visits for injuries related to scooter accidents. The design of the scooter makes it easy to tip or fall if you hit the slightest bump in the road. If you are a new rider, unfamiliarity with the way the scooter works may send you crashing to the pavement. In some cities, trauma centers treat one or more scooter accident victims a day, and about one injury each month is serious and potentially life altering.

Some of the most common injuries include the following:

  • Broken bones in the hands and arms
  • Facial injuries
  • Scrapes and bruises

However, traumatic brain injuries from falls and crashes are also on the rise. As of now, no laws require scooter riders to wear helmets. Although the renters of these devices urge riders to wear helmets for their protection, they do not always provide helmets for their customers. If you are riding a scooter among traffic and are not wearing a helmet, you may be in serious danger.

Is anyone safe?

Riding among traffic may be a concern since scooters reach speeds of only about 15 mph. While this may seem dangerously slow when competing with larger vehicles, it can be a devastating speed when encountering pedestrians. If a scooter collides with you on the sidewalk, you may suffer serious injuries.

While cities iron out the regulation of e-scooters, you may be wondering what your options are if you suffer injuries in an accident, whether as a rider or a pedestrian. A Texas attorney will be familiar with the changing laws regarding scooters and your alternatives for seeking compensation for your injuries.

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