Scooter Injury Incidents: How to Ride Safely

Last updated Monday, June 10th, 2024

Scooter Injury Incidents: How to Ride Safely

Are you aware of the risks when hopping on a scooter? In recent years, scooter-related injuries have soared, raising alarms about rider safety. Understanding the common scooter injury, safety measures, and how to respond if you’re injured can help mitigate these troubling statistics. This article guides you through the spectrum of scooter injuries, from prevention and protective gear to medical and legal responses following an accident.

Key Takeaways

  • Electric scooters, while popular and eco-friendly, pose a significant risk of injuries such as head trauma and broken bones, with protective gear usage alarmingly low among adult riders.
  • Preventative measures like wearing helmets and other protective gear, adhering to traffic laws, and regular scooter maintenance are essential to minimize the risk of accidents and injuries.
  • The incidence and severity of scooter injuries are increasing, with hospitalizations for scooter-related injuries nearly tripling in the U.S. from 2016 to 2020, and the costs associated with treatment escalating five-fold.

Have You Been Injured in a Scooter Accident?

Find Out What Your Case is Worth From Your Georgia Scooter Accident Lawyer.

Understanding Scooter-Related Trauma

Despite their convenience and eco-friendliness, electric scooters, or e-scooters, are associated with a risk of injuries. The most severe injuries related to scooter accidents can include:

  • significant head trauma, similar to bike-related injuries
  • broken bones
  • cuts and bruises
  • sprains and strains
  • road rash

These traumatic brain injuries are not the only concern. It is important to ride e-scooters responsibly and follow all traffic laws to minimize the risk of accidents and injuries.

Broken bones and fractures are also common injuries associated with e-scooters, emphasizing the need for safety precautions while riding scooters.

High-Risk Factors for Scooter Injuries

A photo of a knee pad

Despite the popularity of e-scooters, the high risk of injuries is largely attributed to riders not wearing protective gear. Alarming data shows that the usage of protective headgear among adults riding scooters is as low as 3.7%, even though headgear could greatly reduce the risk of brain injuries.

Moreover, distracted riding, such as using phones for texting or talking while riding, greatly increases the risk of accidents. Maintaining focus and control is achievable by:

  • always keeping both hands on the handlebars while riding
  • adhering to traffic laws
  • staying out of pedestrian areas
  • avoiding operating scooters while under the influence of alcohol or drugs

These measures play a significant role in preventing accidents.

Identifying Common Scooter Injuries

Scooter accidents can result in a diverse range of injuries. Emergency rooms often treat:

  • Contusions
  • Wounds needing stitching
  • Dislocations
  • Fractures

These injuries indicate the diverse nature of scooter accidents. Common injuries to the upper body and extremities underscore the vulnerability in scooter accidents.

The situation is particularly concerning for pediatric patients. Head injuries, such as facial bone fractures and deep lacerations, are prevalent in this group, especially given the low usage of protective headgear. Moreover, scooter injuries are frequently serious enough to necessitate surgical treatment, with cases presenting long bone fractures and even paralysis. Deep lacerations can also lead to blood loss, nerve damage, and other life-threatening conditions that affect a patient’s quality of life.

The Severity of Scooter Accidents

The dramatic increase in hospitalizations due to scooter injuries signifies the severity of scooter accidents. Reports show that scooter injuries have nearly tripled across the United States from 2016 to 2020, leading to a substantial increase in hospitalizations.

The rise in hospitalizations is notable, with over half of the admitted patients requiring major surgeries performed by surgeons. The incidence of scooter-related injuries requiring surgical intervention has doubled, showcasing the severity of these incidents. Almost a quarter of the patients suffering scooter-related fractures, primarily affecting the upper limbs, have undergone surgical treatment.

Compared to injuries sustained in bicycle accidents, those resulting from scooter accidents are more likely to yield severe outcomes, such as long bone fractures and paralysis.

Preventative Measures to Minimize Scooter Injuries

While the statistics may be alarming, individuals can protect themselves and minimize injuries by adopting appropriate safety measures when using electric scooters. Safety for scooter riders heavily depends on the use of the right equipment, like helmets and protective padding.

Importance of Protective Gear

Scooter safety heavily relies on the utilization of protective gear. In many states, wearing a helmet is legally required for riders of certain ages and serves as a crucial protective measure for electric scooter users against head injuries.

Additional protective gear such as elbow and knee pads, gloves, and eye protection is also recommended. These can safeguard against wrist, knee, elbow, and eye injuries during falls. For children, selecting protective headgear in appealing colors or designs can improve the likelihood of them wearing helmets.

For e-scooter riders, protective gear like helmets, gloves, and elbow pads is crucial for protection in the event of falls.

Safe Riding Practices

Preventative measures go beyond just wearing protective gear. Regular inspections and maintenance of the scooter are advised to ensure that brakes, tires, batteries are functioning correctly, and screws and bolts are tight to prevent malfunctions.

In addition to wearing protective gear, safe scooter operation involves:

  • Being vigilant of road hazards
  • Choosing suitable routes
  • Using lights
  • Avoiding sidewalk riding
  • Riding solo
  • Decelerating before making turns or glancing backward to maintain focus on the path ahead

Riders should monitor weather conditions prior to using their e-scooters and consider walking their scooter or postponing their ride when environmental factors, such as poor weather conditions, could increase the risk of accidents.

Lastly, alcohol consumption significantly raises the risk of severe injuries while riding e-scooters, and riders should avoid any form of impairment to ensure safe riding practices.

Medical Response to Scooter Accidents

A doctor in a hospital

Should a scooter accident occur, a prompt and efficient medical response becomes imperative. It includes administering first aid, seeking emergency care, and, in severe cases, undergoing surgical intervention.

First Aid and Emergency Care

The initial few minutes following a scooter accident hold great importance. Immediate first aid should be administered, and if necessary, 911 should be called for an ambulance and police presence, which is essential for assistance and incident documentation.

First aid for scooter-related injuries involves addressing maxillofacial soft tissue lacerations and potential fractures, maintaining a clear airway, immobilizing any dislocations or fractures, checking for proper circulation, and carefully handling the helmet if it needs to be removed. It’s also important to assess any injuries for their severity and move to a safe location away from hazards. Calling emergency services is crucial if serious injuries like uncontrollable bleeding or potential fractures are present after a scooter fall.

Surgical Intervention and Recovery

Scooter injuries of severe nature might necessitate surgical intervention. Approximately 50% of scooter-related fractures necessitate surgical intervention, with lower limb fractures more likely to be treated surgically than upper limb fractures.

The severity of scooter-related injuries frequently calls for orthopedic and plastic surgeries. Recent advances in surgery, such as the use of bone anchors and locking plate technology, have improved the durability of repairs and may decrease recovery time. New surgical interventions allow for early weight-bearing, reducing muscle atrophy and scar tissue formation, hence fostering a smoother recovery. However, strict adherence to mobility guidelines is critical post-surgery, and early weight-bearing is only suitable for certain patients based on their specific injuries and overall health. Some key points to consider are:

  • Orthopedic and plastic surgeries are often necessary for severe scooter-related injuries.
  • Advances in surgery, such as bone anchors and locking plate technology, have improved repair durability and recovery time.
  • New surgical interventions allow for early weight-bearing, which can reduce muscle atrophy and scar tissue formation.
  • Adherence to mobility guidelines is crucial after surgery.
  • Early weight-bearing is only suitable for certain patients based on their injuries and overall health.

Insights from Recent Studies

Recent research offers enlightening information on the escalating incidence of scooter injuries and their resultant effect on public health. Hospitalizations due to scooter injuries in the United States nearly tripled from 2016 to 2020, as revealed by a study from UCLA. Alongside this, the costs associated with treating scooter injuries surged five-fold during the same four-year period.

Analyzing Injury Data

In-depth scrutiny of injury data presents a grim view of the problem’s severity. Hospitalizations for scooter injuries increased nearly three-fold over the span of four years.

Most e-scooter accidents resulting in emergency department presentations occur between Friday and Sunday, with the number of accidents peaking during the summer months. Over 81,000 emergency room visits in 2017 were due to scooter-related injuries, and of nearly 93,000 patients hospitalized for injuries, approximately 6,100 were due to scooter injuries.

Impact of Scooter Injuries on Public Health

The surge in scooter injuries has a significant bearing on public health. The financial burden on healthcare systems due to scooter-related injuries has increased significantly in recent years. Hospitalizations for scooter-related injuries have seen a financial increase from $6.6 million in 2016 to $35.5 million in 2020.

Moreover, non-rider injuries, such as pedestrians tripping over parked e-scooters and cyclists colliding with e-scooter riders, contribute to public safety concerns.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the most common injuries from scooter accidents?

The most common injuries from scooter accidents are head trauma, broken bones, and fractures. It’s important to take precautions to prevent these injuries.

How can scooter injuries be prevented?

To prevent scooter injuries, it’s crucial to wear protective gear like helmets, elbow and knee pads, and to practice safe riding habits.

What should be done immediately after a scooter accident?

Administer first aid, call emergency services if necessary, and document the accident right away to ensure safety and gather important information.

What are the legal implications of a scooter accident?

In a scooter accident, the legal implications revolve around determining liability, as victims can seek compensation for various damages such as medical expenses and lost income.

How have scooter injuries impacted public health?

Scooter injuries have placed a substantial financial burden on healthcare systems and raised concerns about public safety. These injuries have had a significant impact on public health.

Hurt In An Accident? Review Your Case, For FREE

We want to help you get through one of the most stressful experiences you can have. Tell us about your car accident and one of our Personal Injury Lawyers will review it, for free, within one business day.
Member, State Bar of GeorgiaAvvo Clients Choice Award - Murphy Law Firm

Satisfaction Guaranteed

If you are NOT 100% SATISFIED with our services, you can fire our firm within the 30-day period of hiring us and NOT OWE US ONE PENNY!

James Murphy

Book Your Free Consultation with Georgia’s Top Award Winning Attorney Now.

Call 770-577-3020

Murphy Law Firm featured on NBC
Murphy Law Firm featured on CBS
Murphy Law Firm featured on CNN
James Murphy - seen on ABC
Murphy Law Firm featured on FOX
Murphy Law Firm featured on MSNBC
Murphy Law Firm featured on Fox News
Murphy Law Firm featured on CNBC
Murphy Law featured in USA Today
Murphy Law Firm featured in The Wall Street Journal
Murphy Law Firm featured in Forbes
Murphy Law Firm - seen in Newsweek