While the vast majority of humans cannot remember the first time we stood upright and walked, many of us can recall learning to ride a bike, and we almost certainly remember learning to drive a car. With each important milestone comes enhanced freedom and mobility to navigate our world. However, with increased options comes increased responsibility, and the risk of personal injury can rise relative to the number of options available.
In recent years, a new mode of transportation has been on the rise, particularly in urban areas: Electric scooters. These vehicles provide pedestrians with a solution to what is commonly referred to as a “last mile” problem in transportation, where access to public transportation is limited by only a mile or two, yet too far for walkers to access on a routine basis. While these scooters may help solve this problem, concerns regarding their risk of personal injury for riders are becoming more commonplace.
In a 2019 article by global nonprofit agency World Resources Institute, the safety of these scooters on urban roads was examined. The article discussed some major contributing factors to personal injury while riding scooters, such as lack of rider experience, commuting alongside cars travelling at high speeds, and the design of many urban roadways that is inherently less conducive to scooters and similar modes of transportation.
In an attempt to improve the mobility of city residents, Orlando has followed the course of many other metropolitan areas across the United States and enacted a pilot program aimed at bringing scooters to city residents. Armed with GPS technology, these scooters allow Orlando residents to easily find, ride, and drop off scooters when they are finished with their ride.
While the potential benefits of this program are significant, there are risks to personal injury if riders are not aware of best practices. In the event of an accident that results in personal injury to scooter riders, any attempt to recover compensation for damages will likely hinge on whether or not the scooter rider was following the safety rules. Therefore, this article aims to provide Orlando residents with some baseline information on scooter safety in their city.
Scooter Safety Guidelines in Orlando
While wearing a helmet on a scooter is not required by law at this time, it is strongly encouraged by city officials. In the event of an accident that results in personal injury, courts may look to see if the choice to wear a helmet or not was one of negligence when combined with other aggravating factors.
Scooter riders are also advised to ride with the flow of traffic. Like cyclists, scooter riders are expected to be mindful of traffic patterns and yield at appropriate times, including in the presence of pedestrians.
Operating a scooter under the influence of drugs or alcohol is not permitted. If a rider is involved in an accident and incurs personal injury, their attempts to recover compensation for damages may be thwarted if excessive substance use was a determining factor.
When to Contact an Attorney
The laws and regulations regarding safe scooter use on city streets are still evolving. If you are involved in an accident on a scooter in Orlando, you need sound legal representation on your side. Contact the Orlando scooter accident attorneys at Payer Law to discuss your case and determine the best course of action.