Making their way to city streets in 2018, rentable electric scooters are relatively new in Texas. They were introduced as an environmentally friendly, alternative form of transportation that allows riders to get quickly from one place to another. To hop on one of these machines, you simply open an app on your phone, find an available scooter, and unlock it with the app. When you’ve reached your destination, you leave the scooter and lock it up using the app.
Although they are easily accessible and are often more convenient than waiting for public transportation, the scooters pose safety threats to riders and others on roads and sidewalks. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Austin Public Health (APH) reviewed reports of 190 scooter-related accidents and found that many riders suffered injuries to the head, arms, wrists, ankles, feet, knees, and chest. Scooter speed, road conditions, and mechanical malfunctions were all reported as causes of accidents.
Below are a few tips to help you stay safe while riding an electric scooter.
- Wear Safety Equipment
The study by the CDC and APH found that 48% of riders sustained head injuries, with 15% showing evidence of traumatic brain injuries. The agencies reported that these injuries could have been prevented if the rider had been wearing a helmet.
Injuries to the arms and legs can also be prevented, or lessened, by wearing knee and elbow pads.
- Remain Aware of Others
While riding a scooter you are sharing sidewalks and roads with pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorists. Before making turns, crossing intersections, or moving to a different part of the street, check to make sure others aren’t behind or to the side of you. Also, attempt to make eye contact with drivers when traveling across roads. Because of the small size and speed of electric scooters, drivers may not always be aware that you’re near. About 10% of riders in the CDC and APH study were hit by a vehicle.
- Check the Conditions of the Scooter
Flat tires or loose handlebars could cause you to lose control of the scooter, resulting in a collision with structures, cars, or other objects on the road. Make sure the various parts of the scooter are in good working condition.
- Be Aware of Road Hazards
Electric scooters have small tires that can catch on even small bumps in the road, which could result in the rider flying over the handlebars. Keep an eye out for obstructions that could pose a potential hazard.
Discuss Your Case with Farah Law During a Free Consultation
Unfortunately, although you can take safety precautions while riding an electric scooter, some accidents may be unavoidable. If someone else’s negligence resulted in your own injury while riding an electric scooter, you may be able to pursue a claim against the responsible party. Contact our Houston attorneys at Farah Law to get the guidance you need. We will fight hard on your behalf to obtain just compensation for damages.
Call us at (888) 481-9359 or contact us online to speak with one of our experienced attorneys.