Electric scooters, by the name of Bird scooters, arrived in Washington, D.C. in the beginning of 2018. If you have driven or walked around the streets of downtown D.C. within the last few months, odds are you have seen electric scooter riders buzzing around in bike lanes, on sidewalks, and in busy streets at speeds of over 15 miles per hour. You have also probably seen the Bird scooters strewn on sidewalks or grassy areas after their riders abandoned them. As the electric scooters have proven to be quite popular, you can expect to see more Bird scooters on the streets of D.C. in the coming years.
The Bird scooters employ similar technology as dockless bike-sharing systems such as MoBike, LimeBike, Spin, and Jump DC. Bird riders can find unused scooters through an app on their phone, pick up an unused scooter, ride it for a few dollars, and leave it wherever their destination may be. The ease of use, convenience, and downright fun scooter riders are experiencing has even led to more companies, including LimeBike and Skip, entering the D.C. market and expansion into Maryland and Virginia.
While there are certainly many positives associated with the electric Bird scooters, there is also a stark negative in the form of the possibility of injury. The Washington Post recently reported that around the country, “injuries that doctors normally associate with victims of car wrecks” stem from shared electric scooter usage. Simply put, electric scooter riders may, through no fault of their own, end up in an emergency room with a severe injury, large medical bills, and a long road to recovery. Injuries are not even limited to the scooter rider; pedestrians and other motorists are also being injured across the nation because of electric scooters.
Injuries from scooter accidents are due to many reasons, including the following:
- An electric scooter rider being hit by another vehicle or a pedestrian.
- A pedestrian or bike rider being hit by an electric scooter rider.
- The malfunction of an electric scooter causing an accident.
- A person tripping over an unattended electric scooter.
- Electric scooter riders being injured because of potholes or other dangerous conditions.
While you can, and should, be cautious when you are using Bird electric scooters and when you are traveling around Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia, we here at Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. know that some accidents do happen due to the negligence of others. The attorneys at our firm have represented accident victims for over 45 years and we will put that experience to good use as accidents involving this new electric scooter technology occur.
If you become a victim of an electric scooter accident or a bikeshare accident, you should secure legal advice so that you can understand your rights and pursue the compensation you deserve. The attorneys at Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. are more than happy to offer a free consultation to discuss your case. You can contact us any time that is convenient for you.