A fast and affordable mode of transportation through the busy streets of Texas may be an enticing thought. If it’s a fun ride too, that’s a bonus. These are some of the factors that have made micromobility a growing phenomenon across the country. Micromobility products are also the cause of an increasing number of serious and fatal injuries, according to a recent report by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
Micromobility products include vehicles like electronic scooters, electronic bikes and hoverboards. Compared to traditional transportation, these are inexpensive, portable and readily available, thanks to ride-sharing and rental companies in major cities around the world. They offer a fun way to travel short distances without the hassle of car payments, insurance and parking issues. Unfortunately, if you join the micromobility movement, you have a good chance of joining others in the emergency room.
Are you one of thousands with injuries?
The CPSC’s data shows that in the past two years since the introduction of e-scooters and other micromobility products, approximately 133,000 people went to the emergency room with injuries, some of which were life-altering. In the past year, almost 28,000 emergency room visits resulted from e-scooter accidents alone, up from less than 8,000 just two years ago. The most common types of injuries include the following:
- Scrapes and bruises
- Broken arms or legs
- Neck and back injuries
- Head injuries, including brain bleeds
Accidents occur when riders lose control of the scooter, are struck by cars or trucks, or fall from the scooter after striking a curb or uneven pavement. At least 41 people have died from their injuries after an e-scooter, hoverboard or e-bike accident.
Who is responsible?
Of course, there are steps you can take to minimize your chances of suffering injuries while using a micromobility product. Wearing a helmet, maintaining a reasonable speed and never taking chances, such as performing stunts or operating after drinking alcohol, can eliminate some of the common causes of accidents involving e-scooters and other products. However, if you do suffer injuries, especially while using a ride-share vehicle, some important questions may arise in order to determine liability.
Did the renter properly instruct you on the use of the scooter? What was the condition of the scooter when you acquired it? Were there any defects in the product that may have contributed to the accident? Was the driver who struck you distracted or impaired? These and other questions may provide insight into the most appropriate steps to take after suffering injuries in an accident involving a micromobility product.