E-Scooter Accident Attorneys
You have likely seen e-scooters in recent times. These little electric wonders are slowly populating urban areas, downtowns, and other city spots. But what happens if you are involved in an accident? And how can a scooter accident lawyer assist you in your case?
Just a few years ago, you never saw an e-scooter. Over the last 5 or so years, though, they’ve been popping up like popcorn. From Glastonbury and Simsbury to Hartford, Connecticut is flying high with the scooter revolution.
Primarily funded by venture capital firms exploring the next phase in urban transport, these battery-operated scooters offer a quick, convenient, and seamless option to get from point A to point B. But does the concept of scooter transport work in the reality of urban life?
As e-scooters continue gaining traction and popularity in metropolitan centers, this has unfortunately brought the consequence of more reports of injury and death involving them. As many e-scooter accident attorneys already know, this has caused immense pain and suffering to victims.
This post will dive into the important details of e-scooters, safety, and what you need to do if you are involved in an accident. This includes working with experienced Hartford County personal injury lawyers who can help you make sense of your case and plan a path forward.
What Is an E-Scooter?
One important aspect of this conversation is taking the time to learn the details about electric scooters. That way, you can know more about what to do if you’re facing an injury or accident from one of them.
For clarity, e-scooters refer to the electric, dockless scooters you’ve been seeing in city centers and other metro areas. You will typically rent these scooters by the minute of usage. You’ll download an app to your phone to sync with the scooter, unlock and activate it, and track your activity.
These electric, battery-powered scooters are now built with internal GPS systems to track their location and usage per user. Companies provide fleets of these scooters that are deployed in various high-population, urban areas. You can then ride them to your destination and simply leave the scooter on the sidewalk when you are finished.
Legally speaking, the scooters can only be used in designated areas. In most cases, they won’t operate outside of the range where they are approved. These scooters typically ride under 20mph at maximum, so they’re meant for slower cruising than driving but faster than walking.
You must be at least 18 years old to ride and have a valid driver’s license. Younger riders are generally prohibited from using them. Per Connecticut law, you must also ride in designated lanes or on the street – not the sidewalk.
E-Scooters and Mopeds
It is important to note that e-scooters are distinctly different from mopeds in several important ways.
- Literally a bicycle with a motor
- Step-through frame construction
- Comes with or without pedals
- Has a 50cc or smaller motor
- Can drive up to 40mph
- Can get extremely efficient gas mileage of up to 100 mpg
- Obvious, evident scooter form with a platform like a skateboard and handlebars
- Has a small electric motor
- Can drive maximum 20mph, but usually 10-15mph
- Electric-powered and rented by the minute for travelers
Scooter Accident Statistics
From an idea perspective, e-scooters provide a great way for people to zip around a metro area at their leisure and convenience. When the tires hit the pavement, however, some problems can appear.
Unfortunately, accidents can and do occur while operating e-scooters. These can lead to road hazards, property damage, and injuries. Below are several statistics highlighting the rise of e-scooters and the potential danger they may pose to riders as well as the public.
- Over 85,000 e-scooters are now available across 100 cities, and the numbers are growing every day.
- Fewer than 5% of riders wear a helmet while on an electric scooter.
- In 80% of scooter accidents with a fatality, a car is involved.
- 20 people are hurt for every 100,000 electric scooter riders.
- Nearly half of all scooter-related accidents are considered serious, with over 25,00 ER visits in 2020 alone.
- The most frequent types of injuries include upper and lower limbs, the neck, and the head.
Current data suggests that as more people use e-scooters, the greater incidence of serious accidents involving them. Scooter accident attorneys note that the rise in accidents has also caused a rise in related court cases involving them.
Common Injuries Sustained from Scooter and Moped Accidents
Based on data from the American Medical Association, scooter accidents yield a wide range of injuries. These include any of the following:
- Head injuries and brain injuries
- Bone fractures
- Cuts and contusions
- Strains and sprains
As always, if you are involved in an accident, your first order of business should be to seek out medical care. A medical professional can properly evaluate you to determine the extent of your injuries. From there, they can help you get on the right treatment plan to maximize your recovery time.
Scooter Accidents Can Cause Major Injuries
Remember that e-scooters aren’t equipped with safety gear – most notably helmets. Even if a rider wears a helmet, an accident with a vehicle will still potentially cause serious injuries. Once knocked off a scooter, a rider can have a wealth of major injuries as a result.
Bone Breaks and Fractures
The impact of a scooter accident could lead to bone fractures and breaks. According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, even minor fractures can take upwards of a year to fully heal.
More serious breaks can lead to years of pain, therapy, and recovery. Compound fractures could also require surgery to correct. These injuries require even greater recovery times, including long-standing pain and suffering.
Connecticut accident lawyers recommend getting full documentation of your medical care and treatment in the event of an accident. This will help you document the evidence you may need for your case and a potential settlement.
Road Rash and Contusions
The physical process of falling can lead to road rash – or scrapes, cuts, and contusions – in areas across your body. This means trauma that causes bruises without outward bleeding. But scrapes and cuts can lead to bleeding from areas like your knees, hands, arms, head, or worse.
These types of injuries may initially seem minor, but they lead to effects such as swelling, pain, and mobility restriction. Your injuries may not fully manifest at the time of the accident. That’s why it’s imperative that you seek out medical care as soon as possible and document your injuries and pain.
Types of Treatments You Should Seek Out
If you’ve been injured in an e-scooter accident, electric scooter accident attorneys recommend the following treatment options:
Hospitalization: Go to the ER as soon as you can for serious accidents. You may need to wait for an ambulance.
Scans and Tests: Once in the hospital, you will likely need tests such as CT scans and MRIs to evaluate your injuries and determine how serious they are.
Surgery: Some serious injuries like major compound fractures will require surgery to correct.
Nursing or Rehab Facilities: In some cases, you may need to stay at a nursing home or rehabilitative center to initially treat your injuries.
Physical Therapy: Ongoing physical therapy may be required to properly heal and recover from your accident.
Causes of Scooter Accidents
As many moped accident lawyers have learned, the causes of e-scooter accidents can stem from many different sources. Some of the most prominent reasons for these accidents are listed below:
Distracted Drivers: Drivers may be distracted by using their cell phone or other device while driving. This can lead to a serious distraction, which causes them to fail to see a scooter rider and hit them.
Impairment: Drivers impaired by alcohol or drugs may not be driving safely. As a result, they may not see you on your scooter, hit you, and cause injury.
Unsafe Driving Distance: Many motorists either refuse to acknowledge scooter riders or don’t understand the laws and requirements relative to e-scooters. That may cause them to fail to drive within a safe distance between their vehicle and your scooter, leading to a rear-ending accident and potential injury.
Failure to Yield: Many motorists fail to yield within urban places for areas like bicycle lanes, pedestrian crossings, and more. This failure to yield could cause a driver to strike a scooter rider because they don’t understand the rules and regulations involving their lanes.
Road Hazard: Sometimes, a road hazard may lead to an accident with an e-scooter. This could be construction or failure of the city to correct road issues like excess gravel or overly large potholes. These obstacles within an e-scooter zone could easily cause a crash to occur.
E-Scooter Failure: In rare cases, the e-scooter itself could malfunction and lead to an accident. For example, the brakes could fail and prevent a rider from stopping safely. The resulting accident could lead to serious injury for the rider.
Determining Responsibility in a Scooter Injury Accident Case
One of the first orders of business for a Hartford injury lawyer is to determine fault in the case of an accident. Because of the complexities of an e-scooter, determining fault can be an intimidating process.
Responsibility will inevitably come down to whichever party caused the accident. This could be the rider, the manufacturer, another driver, or the city (in poor road conditions). In general, responsibility will come down to these 4 areas:
1. The Rider Themselves
Sometimes an inexperienced rider may not understand how to safely operate an e-scooter. A negligent rider could also opt to rent a scooter when they shouldn’t be operating such a vehicle. In these cases, Connecticut law will prevent you from seeking compensation if it is determined you are negligent. Accordingly, properly operating an e-scooter is paramount for safety and rider responsibility.
2. A Vehicle Driver
Many e-scooter accidents are caused by negligent drivers. Whether distracted, impaired, or irresponsible, drivers account for the largest number of e-scooter rider deaths.
If a driver is found to be impaired, negligent, or breaking a road rule, they could be liable for the injuries a victim may endure. You need to get in touch with Hartford accident attorney as soon as possible to discuss your case.
3. The E-Scooter Company
Whichever company deploys and manages the e-scooter may also be responsible for your injuries in the event of an accident. If your scooter is found to be defective, the liability falls squarely in the hands of the scooter company.
For instance, issues with a scooter’s brakes or accelerator could lead to a responsible rider having an accident. In these cases, you need to speak with an experienced e-scooter accident lawyer about your situation.
4. The City
Sometimes, road-based issues like major gravel, potholes, or other hazards could interfere with an e-scooter rider’s ability to operate safely. These types of hazards are particularly dangerous for riders who only have a small scooter between them and the pavement.
City systems need to keep the roads adequately safe in areas where scooters will be used. If they’re not, and you experience an accident, the city could be potentially liable for damages.
Connecticut Scooter Laws
For those in Glastonbury, Simsbury, Hartford, and other Connecticut cities, it’s critical to understand the e-scooter laws relative to Connecticut.
Driver’s License Requirements
To ride an e-scooter, you need to have a driver’s license and be at least 18 years old. If you’re using an e-scooter app, you may need to scan your driver’s license to gain approval.
Any rider over 18 with their driver’s license does NOT have to wear helmets while using an e-scooter. It is always recommended to wear proper safety gear when using any sort of scooter. However, that may not always be a practical option.
I’ve Been Injured in a Scooter Accident. How Can an Injury Lawyer Help Me?
If you are a victim of an accident involving an e-scooter, you need to take a few critical steps as soon as possible.
Besides getting medical attention, your first order of business ought to be contacting an experienced local injury attorney. Here’s how they can help:
Help Understand Your Case: Your personal injury attorney works with you to understand the details of your case. From there, they develop a course of action relative to your case.
Determine Types of Compensation: In the wake of an accident, you may be entitled to compensation in multiple ways. Your scooter accident attorney can plan out the process and show you the reality of your case. That way, you won’t encounter any unexpected surprises.
E-Scooter Accident Law Firm in Hartford County, Connecticut
Are you suffering from the effects of an e-scooter accident in Hartford, Simsbury, Glastonbury, or beyond? If so, you need to get in touch with a Simsbury accident attorney as soon as possible.
Their collective knowledge of Connecticut law can show you a path forward for your case. You need an ally on your side to get through the complex legal process. That way, you can focus on what’s important: your treatment and recovery. Don’t wait another minute to get the help you need. Contact our team today for a consultation to determine your path forward.
Some of the locations in and around Hartford County our accident lawyers and attorneys serve include: Danbury, Waterbury, Hartford, Simsbury, Glastonbury, Bristol, New Britain, Bloomfield, Bridgeport, Norwalk, Manchester, Windsor, Farmington, Windsor Locks, Wethersfield, Rocky Hill, Avon, Enfield, Newington, South Windsor, Southington, Plainville and more.