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Electric Scooters: Know the Risks Before You Scoot

You’re about to hop on an electric scooter. Looks fun, right? We hate to be a buzzkill, but you should know the risks before you scoot off.

#1: Did you read the scooter app’s user agreement?

You just gave up your right to sue Bird, Lime, Jump or Lyft for injuries, EVEN IF THE BRAKES FAIL. That’s right. That user agreement (which I’m pretty sure you didn’t read because it’s ridiculously long) shields the scooter companies from any liability, even if their scooter malfunctions. Doesn’t seem fair does it? So, make sure you have good health insurance before you get on that thing.

#2: The agreement shifts the burden to you to make sure the scooter is safe.

Huh? What do you know about inspecting an e-scooter for safety? Exactly – you know nothing. If the handlebars are missing or the baseboard is cracked in half – that you’ll catch. But short of something obvious, you don’t have the expertise to know how to inspect the scooter for safety before you start your ride.

#3: If you lose control and hit a car – guess who’s on the hook for damages to the vehicle?

We’ll give you a hint: It’s NOT the scooter company. Again, that good old user agreement shields them from liability. By agreeing to the user agreement, you are accepting responsibility for all harm/damage you cause, EVEN IF the reason you lost control was the brakes failing or the throttle sticking. You should also know that your automobile insurance does not cover scooter accidents. So, you’re on the hook for that $1,500 dent to the side of the Prius you just hit.

#4: You’re responsible for knowing the scooter laws.

You probably know that it’s illegal to ride on a sidewalk. But did you know:

  1. It’s illegal to ride a scooter across a crosswalk (and it’s super dangerous because you can get hit by a right-turning motorist).
  2. You must give a hand turn signal before turning.
  3. You can’t turn left from the middle of the street. Instead, the law requires that you move over to the right curb, dismount, and walk the scooter across the intersection.

What we’ve learned after speaking to over 300 electric scooter injury victims across the nation: Scooters are not toys. They are dangerous!

If you’ve been injured in an electric scooter accident, call McGee, Lerer & Associates for a free consultation: (310) 692-9582. You can also contact us via our online message form by clicking here.