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Electric Scooter Malfunctioned? Report it to the CPSC

Were you injured when a Bird, Lime, Jump or Lyft electric scooter malfunctioned? Do any of these scenarios sound familiar:

  • The brakes failed
  • The handlebars were loose or came off
  • The handlebar post collapsed
  • The throttle stuck at full speed
  • You braked and the scooter sped up instead
  • The baseboard broke in half
  • The scooter suddenly shut off
  • The scooter’s small wheel couldn’t make it over the small curb of a driveway
  • The front wheel pivoted 90 degrees and pitched you off
  • The wheels had no traction and slid out on road paint

The electric scooter company Lime has already recalled scooters twice in the last month: the first time because their batteries had the potential to catch fire, and the second time due to the potential for the scooter baseboards to break apart.

If you were injured due to a malfunctioning electric scooter, you should report the defective product to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). They are a federal regulatory agency charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death from consumer products under their jurisdiction.

The more consumers who complain about a particular safety hazard, the more likely the Consumer Product Safety Commission will investigate whether the product poses an unreasonable risk of harm.

To report a scooter malfunction to the CPSC, file a report here.

Filing out the electronic form takes 5 to 10 minutes.

At McGee, Lerer & Associates, we know that the same electric scooter malfunctions are happening over and over again. The malfunctions are resulting in terrible injuries. The Consumer Products Safety Commission needs to know about these malfunctions and harm they are causing.

Below are some of the scooter accident reports submitted to the CPSC by consumers:

Incident Date 2/14/2019:

Lime green and white electric rental scooter. Riding and wheel locked without warning. I was thrown into a street and broke my arm in the fall. Many such reports convinced me to retain an attorney and file a lawsuit against Lime. Was my 23rd ride with Lime scooters so I'm no amateur. This thing malfunctioned period. Lime recalled its entire fleet from Switzerland last month due to this same issue.

Incident Date 12/29/2018:

On the date of December 29, 2018 on why working in San Diego, a partner of mine and myself rented Lime Scooters to travel back to our hotel after dinner. During the ride while crossing an intersection sidewalk, I went over a 2-4 inch curve walk which caused my scooter to flip toward launching me forward over the scooter face first on the pavement. I was rushed to the hospital and was diagnosed with a broken jaw, split lip, broken teeth, open cut chin, and dislocated shoulder. Four plates were inserted throughout my face along with stitches. My concern is the tires on the Lime scooters should be bigger for better impact on bumpy roads.

Incident Date 12/8/2018:

My 22 year old daughter was using a Lime Electric Scooter in Old Town, Scottsdale AZ. The sidewalk took a sharp turn and the scooter was unable to stop to slow down to take the corner. As a result, she was thrown off the scooter and was knocked unconscious for over 10 minutes. She suffered severe head trauma as well as trauma to the lower back, chest, arm and face. She was taken by ambulance, unconscious to the closest trauma ER hospital. She suffered a double skull fracture and brain bleed and swelling to the head. She remained in the ICU for 4 days and was sent home. Upon returning home, she suffered extreme pain which was uncontrollable from non IV meds, from the brain bleed "feathering" out in tight areas of her brain, and went back to the ICU in hospital again. She lost a month of work, and is looking at a 120K hospital bill to date.

Incident Date 11/29/2018:

Was riding LIME SCOOTER with THUMB BRAKE as opposed to lever brake. When I needed to stop, I discovered that the thumb brake was not working at all, and I crashed. Luckily I have only a severe sprained ankle and crutches for some time and nothing worse. I did go to the hospital.

Incident Date 11/5/2018:

I rented a Bird electric scooter for the first time. I was riding it from campus to an off campus parking lot. I had never rented one before. It started to wobble but I did not think of anything of it. I continued to ride and when I went down a slight incline the bar that holds the handlebar detached from the scooter and I flipped over where the handlebar should be. I ended up going to the ER which it was concluded that I separated my shoulder. I have been in a sling since the incident and will still be in a sling for a few weeks.

Incident Date 10/27/2018:

I was heading West on [REDACTED] towards the [REDACTED] intersection when I decided I was ready to end my ride and drop the scooter off in a Bird-approved location (on the sidewalk). I found a ramp in front of the garage of the Jewish Federation of Greater [REDACTED] ([REDACTED]).
However, when the front wheel of the scooter hit the 1.5" curb of the apron, I was thrown off the scooter. The front wheel stopped when it hit the curb. I feel that, this scooter (Bird) is defective because the wheel should have been able to make it over the 1.5” curb. Because of this accident/incident I suffered a closed trimalleolar fracture of my ankle. I went through surgery and am still recuperating.

Incident Date 9/16/2018:

I rented a Lime scooter on the 16th September. I was a first-time user and suffered a fall when I transitioned from the street to the apron of a garage driveway. There was a 1 inch lip between the street and the driveway, which caused the scooter to buck. I was thrown off the scooter and broke my fall with my right arm (I stiff-armed my fall while holding my palm out to absorb the impact). The fall tore two ligaments/muscles in my right shoulder, which required surgery, which i had on the 16th of October.
Scooters have extremely high centers of gravity and are inherently unstable. they should be banned as a form of commercial transport.

Incident Date 8/19/2018:

On August 19,2018. I was vacationing in [REDACTED] with my family, and decided to ride an electric lime scooter. After riding the scooter for a few minutes, one of the scooters that I rented was not working properly due to malfunction of the brakes. The breaks on the lime scooter were not working during the incident. I tried to slow down and stop the scooter before a curvy turn and the breaks were not working. Therefore I lost control of the scooter and ended up with a right broken radius bone, wrist dislocation and dislocation on my right ankle. My boyfriend called the ambulance, and the fire department got there. The ambulance took me to the hospital where I had surgery and stayed overnight. I have had two surgeries and multiple doctor visits to [REDACTED] since the incident. I have been emotionally and physically under a lot of stress and pain. After I left the hospital overnight, my family took me home. My mother had to miss two weeks off work to care for me. I was not able to walk, write, drive, sleep, shower, go to the bathroom, nor cook. I'm right handed. It has been very hard for me! I had to miss college this semester, and also hire a family member to care for me. Please make sure the equipment that LIME provides for the client are in good condition. For the safety of the public.

Incident Date 6/15/2018:

I experienced an injury on a Lime Bike Scooter in Santa Clara St, downtown San Jose. The handle bar shifted to the left and I fell. Unfortunately it resulted in two broken teeth and scuffed face. My dentist stated my insurance will not cover all the fees.

Incident Date 6/15/2018:

On June 15th, I rented a Lime Scooter bike in [REDACTED] and was riding the scooter along the sidewalks in the downtown area and when I went to cross the street and was going up the crosswalk ramp the front wheel broke off which caused me to fall off face forward into the sidewalk @ [REDACTED] about 5:00pm. I had blood gushing out of my face onto the sidewalk and I went to the car repair store on the corner (A Street Auto Service) where the guys in the shop helped me with paper towels and called Lime customer service to report the incident and then I went to the hospital. On my way to the hospital I called Lime customer service again to report the incident and location of the bike. On both calls, we were told there is no department to handle reporting injuries and I had to email my information. I went to Mercy Hospital and needed three stitches in my chin and was given medicine for pain to my arm and shoulder from the fall. Upon my return home to [REDACTED], on June 22nd I did get the stitches taken out by my local doctor. I did file a claim with the company after the incident on 6/15/18 and as of today, the company has neglected to follow up with even a simple phone call to help me pay the emergency room bill. I have tried to contact them and sent multiple emails with no response for 5 months. I don't believe that this company is responsible and capable to handling this issue with the dangerous product that they are providing.

Incident Date 3/28/2018:

I reserved a Lime scooter to ride from my office to an appointment that was a little over a mile away. I was riding the scooter for a few minutes before the accident happened. I approached a sharp turn and started breaking with the hand-breaks, but the scooter was not slowing down enough - so I attempted to stop by jumping off. When I jumped off the scooter it was still moving and I was still trying to brake with my hands. As a result the forward momentum pulled me down and my face hit the concrete curb. When I was able to sit back up I realized that the impact of hitting the curb had given me a large (2-3") laceration that extended from my upper lip to my left nostril (basically my lip was cut in half). I was fortunate that a taxi passed a minute or two after I fell - and I was able to get a ride to GWU hospital, here in Washington, D.C. an ENT surgeon at GWU repaired the laceration (with 30 stitches), but I will have a scar the rest of my life.