All across the nation, dock-less electric scooters are available for rent in dozens of U.S. cities. This new form of transportation is not only fun, they’re cheap, convenient, earth friendly and help saves time. Yet, with all the benefits of these electric scooters there are just as many risks to them. And now they are coming to Chicago. Over the weekend, the City launched a pilot program that put 2,500 motorized scooters on the City streets. The total number can go as high as 3,500.
The rise of motorized scooters also comes with much controversy. Cities everywhere are littered with scooters from Lime, Spin or Bird, causing an eyesore and a new kind of congestion to the city. More notably, is the rise of injuries.
According to recent studies, electric scooters now send more people to the hospital than bicycles or walking. Cases of broken noses, wrists and shoulders, along with facial lacerations, fractures and nerve, tendon or ligament injuries have been reported due to accidents with an electric scooter. Head trauma tops the list of severe injuries involving the use of an electric scooter
Riders are often sharing the road with fast-moving vehicular traffic, but appear to underestimate the hazards. Sure, they really can only go to a max speed of 15 mph in most cases, but speed does not correlate with lower accident risk.
Majority of the injuries were from physically riding the scooters; however, some pedestrians were injured when scooter riders crashed into them, and others tripped over scooters while simply walking.
Implementing safety fixes could take a long time. Take for example the process communities have taken for bike lanes or even sidewalks. Until we see stricter restrictions, it is important to be mindful while using electric scooters and if you haven’t been a pedestrian yet in a city where these scooters are everywhere, you are in for a surprise.
With the rise of scooters you know that lawsuits are going to follow. The reality is that no Chicago attorney has experience with these cases because there haven’t been enough of a history yet. That said, there are plenty of lawyers in Chicago who have great experience suing dockless bike companies and ride share companies and the premise behind these lawsuits is the same. If you are hit by a scooter, you are potentially suing the operator as well as the scooter company if you are injured. If you are hurt while riding a scooter you may have a case against the scooter company, the person who caused the accident and potentially the City itself.
Bottom line is that just any old personal injury attorney wouldn’t be right for you, especially if you have a serious injury. If you’d like to talk to one of our lawyers for free about an accident to get a recommendation to an experienced law firm who can give you the best chance of a great result, call us at 312-346-5320 any time.