Dockless Scooter Accidents
Did You Sustain a Dockless Scooter Injury?
San Jose Rental Scooter Accident Attorney Explains Scooter Driver RisksDockless scooters are an emerging industry that is becoming very popular throughout California. Previously limited to app-based scooter companies like LimeBike, Spin and Bird Scooter Rental, now car companies are entering the business. For instance, in San Jose, California, Ford announced its GoBike motorized scooter rental program. Additionally, rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft are entering the bike share network. However, the changing nature of this recent industry comes with some unwanted aspects. When dockless scooter company startups came to California in March 2018, permits were not needed. As a result, there have been multiple reports of dockless scooter injuries and other frustrations like defective brakes on scooters. Some of these scooter-related injuries involve seriously injured children, including an 11-year-old girl who ruptured her spleen in June 22 of 2018. Unsurprisingly, these injuries are almost always severe, and it is usually due to the lack of proper safety measures. No one should have to suffer because of a company rushing to provide service before establishing a safe product. If you have been involved in a motorized scooter accident, contact our San Jose rental scooter accident attorney. At the Law Offices of Braid Pezzaglia, we know how to strengthen personal injury claims. Our San Jose attorney has been helping people pursue financial recovery for over 20 years. If you have been involved in a dockless scooter accident, we can investigate the details in order to build you the strongest case possible. With our team of professionals, we can scrutinize evidence, cross-examine witnesses and analyze reports in depth. Ultimately, our goal is to highlight the facts that support your claim, help you receive appropriate compensation and set a precedent for the future.
What Are California Guidelines for Motorized Scooters?While regulations are still emerging for rental scooters, there are still some guidelines in California. Knowing these rules can help determine if a person was negligent when operating his or her scooter. If this is the case, you may have a scooter-related claim. For example, if you were injured by someone driving a motorized scooter on the sidewalk, then you may have grounds for a personal injury claim. This is because it is illegal to operate a scooter on the sidewalk. Alternatively, if someone claims you were driving a rental scooter illegally, it can be beneficial to know the guidelines and rules to protect yourself. California scooter laws are changing rapidly as the industry becomes more and more understood and will vary depending on the city. However, as of 2018, the current laws include:
- Age: To drive any motorized scooter, you must be at least 16 years old. Anyone who drives a rental scooter under this age is operating a motor vehicle illegally and will be punished if caught.
- Safety: The speed limit for any motorized scooter is 15 miles per hour (MPH). Scooters may not be ridden on any street with a speed limit or 25 MPH or higher and cannot be driven on sidewalks. Additionally, helmets are required as well as front lights and front and rear reflectors.
- Permit: In addition to age restrictions, there are permit requirements. Much like driving an automobile, scooter drivers must have a license or instructional permit to operate a motorized scooter.
Why Regulate Rental Scooters?Scooter-based businesses are only recently facing regulations. This is a good thing, because regulations can help implement safety procedures for manufacturing, using and storing scooters. Nonetheless, accidents involving California scooter drivers are not new. In fact, a Santa Monica woman injured on a rental scooter broke her collarbone and arm after a Bird rental scooter failed to initiate its brakes on MY 18, 2018. These reports reveal a disturbing trend that not all motorized scooters are examples of a safe product. These emerging California regulations can help prevent:
- Poor Business Practices: Sometimes a local economy is hurt by poor business practice. In fact, as recent as February 2018, lawsuits against rental scooter companies are already occurring. These poor business practices can not only hurt individuals, but communities as well.
- Personal Injury From Rental Scooters: Just like a car accident, you can be involved in a dockless scooter accident even if you drive safely. However, some people are unsure how to operate their legal rental scooters on sidewalks and other public spaces. This creates confusion for motorists and pedestrians and can sometimes lead to a wrongful death claim.
- Defective Dockless Scooter Products: As mentioned previously, reports are emerging about defective products being released from scooter manufacturers. By drafting legal guidelines, more injuries can be avoided. However, until there are more guidelines for scooter manufactures, exercise caution while on a dockless scooter.