Forty percent of
electric scooter injuries reported nationwide involve head injuries, according
to the Journal of American Medical Association study published earlier this
year. It also mentioned 32% of those reported injuries included fractures; 28%
were less serious injuries such as cuts, sprains and bruises. Lawmakers across
the country including those in Atlanta are considering appropriate legislation
to effectively govern the public’s use of these shared dockable mobility
devices. Safety weighs as one of the largest concerns.
Attorney Reginald Lewis has spent nearly 20 years diligently defending the
rights of injured individuals. He urges scooter riders to take extreme caution
in knowing their rights before engaging on a commute. Attorney Lewis shares the
following tips for scooter riders:
- Read the digital agreement in its entirety–
Understand the terms the scooter company is asking you to agree. Are you
waiving any potential rights by signing the agreement? Know who carries the
legal responsibility were something to go wrong during your commute.
- Follow all transportation laws- Scooter
riders are expected to signal turns and obey all traffic signs. Both hands
should be empty and place on the handle bars. Safely store your cell phone, cups
or any other items.
- Know the local laws- Riding electric
scooters on the sidewalks is no longer permitted. These devices are to be
operated on the main streets, much like bicycles.
- Review the app- Pay attention to the
company’s instructions on how to properly operate the scooter. Also look for
any safety tips!
- Be aware of your surroundings- Remove
earbuds or headphones. The rider needs to be able to hear the motor vehicles
- Dress the part- Though not a requirement,
wear a helmet. Costs range from $15-$100. Light colored clothing and reflective
gear should also be worn, especially if riding a scooter during darker hours.
- Scooters are designed to carry one person at a time– One person per scooter. No exceptions.
In January 2019,
Atlanta city leaders approved a law mandating among other things, electric
scooter companies purchase liability insurance. It has yet to be decided
whether riders will eventually be required to sign liability waivers before
zooming away on a scooter.