Whether you are a local or tourist roaming the cities of Miami Beach and Downtown Fort Lauderdale, there is a solid chance that you will be surrounded by swarms of electric scooters and bikes. You may have witnessed them all over the country, especially now that you can download the ‘Lime’ app easily from your smartphone in order to take one of these scooters for a cruise around town and drop it off anywhere.
Though the scooters may be a sustainable alternative to driving a car, a new kind of transportation means new hazards and potential injuries that can come of the trend, thus leading to a dangerous set of risks. . Apparently, some of them have been overheating and catching fire. Lime also mentioned receiving reports about the possibility of their baseboards cracking or breaking after repeated abuse, or if one were to ride off a curb at high speed. The hardware issues aren’t the only problem at hand to consider. There are bound to be vehicle collisions with people on vacation, specifically in areas like South Florida, among others. While the scooter service provider may have safety regulations included in their application, there is no telling of who will use their helmet as encouraged, who will follow traffic laws, travel individually, and never drive under the influence of alcohol.
A big misconception with scooters is how they are considered safer in comparison to motorcycles just because they may typically weigh less, are smaller in size, have a smaller engine, and can’t run nearly as fast. According to studies, they show that more traffic fatalities, in relation to speeding, take place on roads with speed limits of 35 mph or lower (where powered scooters can ride) than on the interstates with speed limits of 55 mph or over.
A two-wheeled vehicle with a 50cc engine and under does not require a motorcycle license or endorsement in several states. With this being said, chances are that the majority of scooter riders may not have the prior experience necessary on two wheels, nor have any obligation to take on a course to learn how to ride, since the only requirement is a standard state license. Anyone can easily purchase a scooter meeting the engine criteria and drive through traffic unprepared and unaware.
It doesn’t matter if it is a motorcycle or scooter — either way you will be faced with the same types of weather and environment conditions like rain, wind, and let’s not forget the blinding sunshine. You are more than likely going to ride the same roads with potholes while also trying to navigate through the same traffic as other larger vehicles. After all, the smaller wheels on scooters make riders all the more susceptible to react to other hazards such as debris and bumps. It is also much harder to see motorcycles in traffic. With a scooter being smaller it will be just as difficult if not more to see, putting yourself at risk when surrounded by heavy traffic, as other motorists might not recognize a scooter and rider in their path on the road.
If you have experienced an injury due to a Lime scooter, do not hesitate to contact Neufeld, Kleinberg, & Pinkiert, P.A, our personal injury attorneysin South Florida handle motorcycle accident claims. Regardless of the differences between scooters and motorcycles, both are two-wheeled methods for transportation that should be ridden cautiously. So be prepared, follow the traffic laws, and stay safe!