An accident involving an electric scooter and a car in downtown Raleigh left one person in the hospital early this morning. This incident is the latest in a rising trend of accidents involving rental electric scooters. The rider of the Lime scooter reportedly crossed South Dawson Street at a red light and collided with a passing car, sustaining minor injuries.
Although Raleigh’s electric scooter rules require riders to wear a helmet and ride only in bike lanes, users of these scooters seem to consistently fail to comply. For many riders, failing to follow the rules has led to severe injuries.
Many e-scooter injuries linked to lack of a helmet
According to a recent study conducted in southern California, 40% of people injured in electric scooter crashes sustain head injuries – often life-threatening ones. Researchers attributed the high instance of head to low rates of helmet use. In fact, the study found that only about 4% of injured riders were wearing a helmet.
Can regulations keep up with popularity?
An investigation by Consumer Reports found that, in the last year, at least 1,545 accidents across the country involved electric scooters. Many cities found themselves in a power struggle with electric scooter companies, scrambling to come up with regulations to prevent accidents on city streets. Some cities have gone as far as banning electric scooters altogether.
However, the popularity of this new mode of transportation indicates that electric scooters are here to stay. Moving forward, preventing accidents will come down to a combination of effective regulation and safety measures taken by riders.