According to a recent study by Rutgers University, accidents involving electric scooters have tripled over the past 10 years. In 2018 there were over 6,957 accidents reported, with 66% of those injured not wearing helmets. E-scooter use is growing and growing every year with over 28.5 million trips using the scooters last year.
Recently downtown Tampa saw the invasion of electric scooters from four different companies, Lime, Spin, Jump and Bird as a part of a Shared Motorized Scooter Pilot Program. With that brings great opportunities for solving the “Last Mile” issue for commuters, quick transportation during lunch and a really just a fun new thing. But the e-scooters also bring a certain amount of safety concerns. For example, in Tampa when you want to ride an e-scooter, a helmet does not automatically go with it, if you want to wear one you need to bring it with you.
In Florida, e-scooters are only allowed on sidewalks, but that doesn’t mean people are completely following that law. Dr. Ryan Stanton, an emergency medicine physician out of Kentucky said that he treated a patient who hit an uneven patch of concrete on the sidewalk and ended up going over the handlebars with major head contusions.
So what can you do to help prevent injury while using an e-scooter?
- Wear a Helmet- Yea, we know this is not realistic at all times but if you know you are going to use a scooter, take one with you on your commute
- Follow the Rules- Rules are there for a reason. For example, in Tampa you are only allowed within a certain area and only on sidewalks. Stick to the area you are supposed to be in.
- Look Again- When crossing a street or driveway always double check you are clear to go.
- Practice in Safe Area- If you have not been on an e-scooter before, you should definitely practice stopping and going in a safer area before being close to any many roads or moving vehicles.
Police Chief Brian Dugan has said that there have not been any accidents reported yet, but he is sure it is “just a matter of time.”
If you find yourself or someone you know wrongly injured in an e-scooter accident, call us 813.602.7849 for a free consultation.