The need for an electric scooter accident lawyer is on the increase as the popularity of these nifty forms of transportation soars. From joyrides for teens to adult and college commutes, both individually owned and rideshare e-scooters are taking Florida’s cities by storm! Thanks to their fuel efficiency and convenience, their usage is set to continue to rise.
It is not all fun and games, though. The incidence of scooter accidents has led to ERs seeing an increase in related fractures, head injuries, and soft-tissue injuries. Recent figures reveal that since 2018, approximately 30 people have been killed riding electric scooters in the United States. One reason more and more people are consulting their local electric scooter accident attorney is the dangers inherent with motorized scooters:
- Scooters quickly accelerate to speeds of up to 30 mph.
- Scooterists are completely exposed, and helmets are not mandatory.
- Scooters are often used in pedestrian-heavy areas.
- Rental scooters are dropped off anywhere – causing a tripping hazard.
- The low height of scooter riders makes them harder for large vehicles to see.
- There are no turn signals and wet weather conditions can dampen the rider’s grip.
E-Scooters and The Law
One of the drawbacks of e-scooters is their relatively new status in the eyes of the law. Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill legalizing electric scooters in Florida only in mid-2019. Further blurring the legal lines, many regulations about the rights and responsibilities of scooterists are determined by each city’s authorities. Though, the following rules apply:
- Users must be at least 16 years old and hold a valid driver’s or motorcycle’s license
- Helmets are required for riders under 16 and encouraged for everyone else
- No passengers may be carried
- Scooters are not allowed on any highways or on the sidewalks of most cities in Florida
- Normal road traffic laws and signs must be obeyed
- Scooters should be ridden as far to the right-hand side of the road as possible.
Who Is Liable In An Electric Scooter Accident?
Because Florida is a no-fault state, compensation for minor accidents should be recovered from your own auto insurance provider with no need to prove who caused the incident. You will only need to establish electric scooter accident liability if you intend to file a personal injury lawsuit:
- Electric scooter riders may be held accountable if they knock and injure a pedestrian. Conversely, a pedestrian who causes an e-scooter accident due to negligent behaviour may be at fault.
- Automobile drivers who are distracted, speeding, or otherwise driving recklessly could be liable for injuries caused by colliding with a scooterist.
- Electric scooter manufacturers may be found at fault if a malfunction caused the accident.
- An e-scooter rental company could be liable if factors under their control (maintenance and repairs) contributed to the accident.
- The city may be liable for damages occurring because of a roadway defect, for example, a pothole or a malfunctioning traffic light.
- A business or construction company responsible for a property could be held liable for injuries if an e-scooter accident happens because of debris or obstructions on the property.
A knowledgeable electric scooter lawyer will give you the information you need to pursue a case in court – whether you are a scooterist, pedestrian, driver, or cyclist.