Over the past few years, a greater number of people have been using electric scooters to get around Miami. While they have been around for over a decade, electric scooters were not a popular form of transportation. It wasn’t until recent times that locals and tourists have decided to use electric scooters as a primary mode of transportation. A government decision has allowed a pilot program of six scooter companies with 50 scooters each to hit the Miami streets.
Sadly, this isn’t the safest form of travel. The scooters might be convenient, but they are also dangerous. Electric scooter accidents in Miami can happen, and the results tend to be serious. Riders, pedestrians, and other vehicle drivers could all be at risk. Typically, the accidents involve major injuries.
The issue isn’t limited to Miami. Scooter accidents can happen anywhere. However, scooters are particularly popular in Miami. This makes accidents more common. If you’re involved in a scooter accident, you may be able to seek compensation. By working with an experienced attorney, you can work towards getting the money you deserve. 1-800-Injured can help you get started on your journey to compensation.
What Causes Electric Scooter Accidents in Miami?
There are many reasons for the frequency of scooter accidents in Miami. First, there’s the wear and tear that happens to the scooters. In fact, one of the leading scooter producers recently recalled some of their products for malfunctions due to wear and tear.
Malfunctions are one of the leading causes of accidents. If a scooter comes to a sudden stop or fails to brake, the rider is in danger. The individuals around the rider can also be in danger. They can lose balance or veer out of their lane. All of the following are other common causes of scooter accidents:
Another cause of scooter accidents is debris in the road. When a hazard is in the road, a scooter rider could lose balance. Because a scooter only has two wheels, it doesn’t have the same support as a car. A large pebble or any other road hazard can cause an accident.
All too often, people leave their scooters haphazardly. This puts others at risk for a slip and fall accident. An unaware passerby might trip over the scooter and suffer from injuries. If a rider doesn’t leave the scooter in a proper place, they could be liable for the accident.
To transport scooters from one place to another, some people use pick-up trucks. But the loaders or drivers don’t always secure their loads. When they drive off, a scooter could fall off of their bed. A car or truck driver could be forced to swerve to avoid the scooter. Then, the driver could cause an accident.
At times, rider misuse is the cause of scooter accidents. Some riders behave recklessly. They may ride too fast on a busy sidewalk, ride while distracted, or ignore the rules of the road. This can cause accidents with pedestrians or other vehicles, or it can cause property damage.
Other people on the road aren’t always vigilant. Frequently, drivers are too busy on their phones or talking to passengers to look at the road. This puts scooter riders at a risk. If a driver isn’t watching the road, they might not notice a scooter. Or, they could ignore a red light or stop sign.
Distracted driving is one of the most common causes of car accidents. Therefore, it’s not difficult to conceive that it could be one of the most common causes of scooter accidents.
Who Is Responsible for the Accidents?
Liability can be a difficult thing to prove. When the cause of the accident is a malfunction, liability is particularly complex. Despite issuing a recall on some of their scooters, one scooter manufacturer claimed that they bore no responsibility for the accidents caused by faulty scooters. Instead, they placed the blame on the parts manufacturers.
Adding to the difficulty is the fact that many electric scooter companies, including Lime, are based out of China. Instead of only involving U.S. personal injury laws, the case also involves international laws. This makes it much more difficult to file a lawsuit against a Chinese scooter or parts manufacturer.
Of course, there could be another party besides the parts manufacturer or the scooter company to blame. When the accident is caused by a negligent driver, they could be held responsible for the accident.
The issue becomes more complicated when the scooter driver causes an accident. In Florida, motorized scooters are not motor vehicles. The lack of laws confuses the case. Making the accident even more confusing is the fact that every county has different ordinances regarding scooter accident claims.
Even the city of Miami could be liable for the accident. If they failed to have proper signage or to keep road conditions safe, the city could be to blame. If you have questions regarding liability, you should contact an attorney. There may be multiple parties responsible for your accident. With an attorney’s help, you can hold one or all of those parties accountable for their actions.
When is the Rider Responsible for Their Own Injuries?
A rental scooter rider needs to comply with certain rules. For instance, they have to sign a User Agreement that puts some responsibility on their own shoulders. The agreement says that riders need to wear helmets and follow all rules.
Therefore, a rider could be responsible for paying for their own medical expenses and more. But this isn’t always the case. The laws regarding electric scooters are sparse. Because it’s a relatively new mode of transportation, there is much ambiguity about the laws. It will take some time for the laws to catch up with the current situation.
Common Scooter Accident Injuries
There are many injuries that can be caused by scooter accidents. However, the worst-case scenario isn’t an injury – it’s a fatality. It is possible for a scooter accident to result in a death. It’s not infrequent in car accidents. In 2017, 285 people died in car accidents in Miami-Dade County. As scooters become more popular, it’s likely that more fatalities will occur.
In 2018, one Texas man died after he hit his head when he fell off his scooter. At that time, it was the only scooter fatality in the U.S. However, there was more to common. Only two weeks later, a man was riding his scooter and dragged under an SUV. He died from his injuries. In the past year, there have been other examples of scooter fatalities.
Even if an accident isn’t fatal, it can be serious. The following can occur to a scooter accident victim:
If a pedestrian is struck by a scooter, they can be sent to the ground. A scooter rider can also be sent to the asphalt. If they don’t have a helmet or their helmet comes loose, their head could hit the ground.
A head injury can impact your life in many ways. For one, it can cause memory loss. Short-term memory loss can keep you from working. Meanwhile, long-term memory loss can change your life forever. Other possible effects of head injuries also include cognitive challenges and loss of motor skills.
Any victim of a scooter accident can experience a laceration. Deep lacerations can be painful and require stitches. In the wrong place, a laceration can do nerve damage. This could result in permanent damage or result in surgery.
If a laceration occurs in a visible spot, it could lead to disfigurement. A large laceration can cause a scar that results in low self-confidence and other issues.
Scooter accidents can cause broken bones, which are both painful and devastating. A broken bone could leave you unable to work for weeks or months at a time. For instance, if you work a job that requires you to type, a broken arm could prevent you from doing your job.
Although road rash may seem like a minor injury, it is very painful. It also has the potential to turn into a more serious problem. If road rash becomes infected, your life could be in danger. Treatment for your infection could be costly and time-consuming.
Why Are Scooter Accidents So Dangerous?
Any type of accident can be dangerous. However, scooter accidents can be particularly hazardous. This is because of several reasons.
To drive a car, you need a license. That license is not easy to obtain. If you can’t pass your driver’s test, you can’t drive.
However, scooters are different. Scooter riders need no training. But that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t have any training. The more inexperienced a rider, the more likely they are to be in an accident. It’s easy for an inexperienced rider to lose control and crash into something or someone.
If a pedestrian is walking, they are likely to hear a car. The loud engine is easy to hear, and this puts pedestrians on high alert. However, scooters are almost silent. Pedestrians are unlikely to hear a scooter zipping past them.
Often, a pedestrian doesn’t notice a scooter until it’s too late. Because scooters are allowed on sidewalks, they zoom past pedestrians. If a pedestrian moves to the side or stops suddenly, the scooter rider could hit them.
Scooters don’t go as fast as cars or motorcycles. However, they do travel quickly. Some go as fast as 20 miles per hour. While this is great for those who want to get somewhere quickly, it’s bad news for individuals who are accident victims.
Speeding scooters can be extremely dangerous. Unfortunately, many riders go faster than they should. They might be in a rush to get somewhere, or anxious to pass slow pedestrians. In any case, the result can be a disaster.
How to Seek Compensation
If you’re involved in an electric scooter accident in Miami, you could experience serious injuries. The cost of those injuries can add up. However, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries.
Unlike car accidents, scooter accidents don’t always involve insurance. Scooter riders are not required to have personal injury protection, as is required by Florida law for car drivers. For this reason, seeking compensation often demands an attorney.
An attorney can take you through the steps for seeking compensation. Typically, this means filing a personal injury claim against the negligent party. If someone’s negligence caused the accident, they could be held liable in a civil court. You can file a civil lawsuit against them. With it, you could recover damages for your injuries and more.
What Damages Can You Receive?
Every case is worth a different amount. This is because the amount you receive depends on several factors. First, there are the medical bills. You can receive money for all of your past and future medical bills. This isn’t limited to surgeries and emergency room visits. You can also receive money for your medicine, therapies, and other medical expenses.
Secondly, you can receive damages for your missed wages. In many situations, the victims must miss days from work. Their injuries can prevent them from working, or their doctor appointments can cut into their hours. If your lawsuit is successful, you may be able to receive compensation for your missed wages.
You can also receive damages for your pain and suffering. If you settle your case in court, the court will determine how much you deserve for your pain and suffering. However, you can resolve your case in court. This could get you more money for your pain and suffering.
What Are Your Chances?
If you want to receive compensation for your accident, you should contact an attorney. They can tell you more about your chances for a successful claim. Furthermore, they can build your case for you.
Are you ready to get started? If so, contact us at 1-800-Injured to be connected with a personal injury attorney in your area. 1-800-Injured is an attorney and medical referral service. We connect the victims of scooter accidents and other types of collisions with proven personal injury lawyers in their area. Contact us to get started on your financial recovery.