Though e-scooters seem like a convenient and eco-friendly way to navigate crowded urban streets, their popularity has led to a noticeable increase in accidents and injuries.
A study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety at George Washington University Hospital between March and November 2019 provides valuable insights into the factors that contribute to e-scooter accidents. The study, which involved interviewing over 100 injured e-scooter users, presents some helpful facts:
- Three out of five riders were injured while riding on the sidewalk, while one in five was injured in a bike lane or trail.
- A quarter of the injured riders were commuting, with the remaining 75% running errands or riding for recreational purposes.
Looking at the larger picture across the United States, e-scooter accidents share several common characteristics:
- 80% of electric scooter crashes involve automobiles.
- Nearly 50% of electric scooter accidents occur between 10 pm and 6 am. Late-night riding poses additional risks due to lower visibility and increased likelihood of impaired judgment.
- Almost half (48%) of injured e-scooter riders are aged between 18 to 29 years.
- A staggering 95% of riders don’t wear helmets, even though doing so significantly reduces the risk of head injuries.
- Around 33% of injured riders are first-time users, highlighting the importance of learning to handle an e-scooter safely before venturing onto busy streets.
- 20% of accidents result primarily from hazardous surface features, such as potholes or debris.
Tips for Safe E-Scooter Riding
To minimize the risk of accidents while riding an e-scooter, consider these safety tips:
- Wear a helmet: Though it may seem inconvenient, wearing a helmet can significantly reduce your risk of a head injury in case of an accident.
- Get familiar with the e-scooter: If you’re a first-time rider, take the time to learn how to operate and balance on the scooter before venturing onto busy streets.
- Mind the road conditions: Be aware of your surroundings and keep an eye out for potential hazards, such as potholes, debris, or obstacles on the pavement.
- Stick to designated lanes and paths: If possible, ride in bike lanes or trails rather than on sidewalks
How a Lawyer Can Help After an E-Scooter Accident
If you’ve been involved in an e-scooter accident – particularly one that wasn’t your fault – it’s a good idea to consult a personal injury lawyer. Here’s how they can help you:
One of the most crucial aspects of any e-scooter accident case is determining who is at fault and liable for the damages. A skilled lawyer can help you navigate the complexities of determining liability, which may involve multiple parties, such as the scooter rider, pedestrians, vehicle drivers, or even the e-scooter manufacturer or rental company.
Handling Insurance Companies and Negotiations
Dealing with insurance companies can be an intimidating and complex process, particularly when it comes to e-scooter accidents. Insurers often have vast resources and skilled negotiators whose primary goal is to minimize their payout. A lawyer with experience in e-scooter claims will know how to deal with insurance companies on your behalf, defend your rights, and negotiate for a fair settlement.
In some cases, it might be necessary to challenge an insurance claim denial. A lawyer will not only manage all communication with the insurance companies on your behalf but also will strive to maximize the amount of compensation you receive.
Going to Trial
Should negotiations fail, a lawyer can represent you in court and present your case before a judge or jury. A lawyer with trial experience in e-scooter accident cases is essential in ensuring that you receive the best possible outcome.
For help after an accident, contact an e-scooter accident lawyer in Washington, D.C. Lightfoot Law to schedule a free consultation.