Transate Talk to UsLatest News

Negligent Security Seminar | March 2015

Florida personal injury lawyers



    How much is :

    The Hidden Dangers of E-Scooters in Florida Cities

    As cities across Florida continue to embrace micro-mobility, electric scooters, or e-scooters, have surged in popularity. These compact, electric vehicles offer a convenient and eco-friendly alternative for short-distance travel. However, beneath the surface of this modern transportation solution lie hidden dangers that pose significant risks to users and pedestrians alike.

    The Rise of E-Scooters in the Sunshine State

    In recent years, Florida’s urban centers, including Miami, Tampa, and Orlando, have seen an influx of e-scooters. College campuses and city officials have partnered with various e-scooter companies such as Bird, Lime, and Spin to integrate these vehicles into the urban transport ecosystem. They promote them as a solution to reduce traffic congestion and carbon emissions and ease parking.

    Bird, which operates in the Greater Miami area, claims a single e-scooter reduces about 1,500 pounds of carbon emissions yearly. In addition, Bird’s community pricing offers low-income riders a 50% discount, helping to ensure equitable access.

    While the benefits are clear, the rapid proliferation of e-scooters has introduced new challenges and safety concerns.

    Navigating the Hidden Risks

    In Florida, e-scooters are generally regulated under laws that apply to motorized scooters and similar micro-mobility devices. E-scooters are defined as motorized vehicles with less than 3 wheels that typically do not have a seat or saddle for the rider, and they are powered by an electric motor.

    The minimum age to ride an e-scooter in Florida is 16. Helmet requirements can vary, often depending on the rider’s age. In general, minors must wear helmets while operating an e-scooter, while adults might not be subject to this requirement. However, helmets are not typically included with shared scooters, and it’s unlikely that people carry a helmet with them on the off chance that they might ride a scooter.

    Many Florida cities lack the necessary infrastructure to safely accommodate e-scooters. The absence of dedicated lanes for micro-mobility devices forces riders onto sidewalks or into traffic, increasing the risk of accidents. Furthermore, the poor condition of some roads and sidewalks can make e-scooter travel perilous.

    E-scooter-related accidents have become increasingly common. Riders risk collisions with vehicles, unexpected falls due to equipment malfunction, or accidents caused by navigating through crowded sidewalks. Head, neck, and traumatic brain injuries are particularly concerning outcomes of e-scooter accidents, underscoring the critical importance of helmet use.

    Pedestrians are also at risk, especially when e-scooters are used on sidewalks, where high speeds and unpredictable movements can lead to collisions. The compact size and quiet operation of e-scooters make them less noticeable to both pedestrians and drivers, further increasing the potential for accidents. In addition, a common problem with rented e-scooters is abandonment. Riders simply hop off at their destination, leaving the scooters behind to become tripping hazards on sidewalks.

    Safety Tips for E-Scooter Users

    To mitigate the risks associated with e-scooter use, riders should adhere to safety guidelines:

    • Wear a Helmet: Always wear a helmet to protect against head injuries, regardless of age or helmet laws. It’s the one thing you can do to protect yourself from serious injury or death.
    • Observe Traffic Laws: Follow all traffic laws and regulations, including speed limits and signals.
    • Use Designated Lanes: Use bike lanes or designated areas for e-scooters, avoiding sidewalks.
    • Be Alert: Stay aware of your surroundings, especially near pedestrians, vehicles, and obstacles.
    • Park Responsibly: Ensure that the e-scooter is parked in a designated area or manner that does not obstruct pedestrian pathways or access.

    Legal Implications for E-Scooter Accidents in Florida

    Florida law allows victims of e-scooter accidents to pursue personal injury claims. Establishing liability in these cases can be challenging, as it often involves multiple parties, including e-scooter companies, other motorists, and sometimes city governments. Victims must prove negligence, which requires demonstrating that the responsible party failed to act with reasonable care, leading to the accident and resulting injuries.

    E-scooter companies often include user agreements that riders accept before using the service, which can include clauses that limit the companies’ liability. However, these agreements do not absolve companies from responsibility for issues such as equipment malfunction or failure to maintain scooters in a safe condition.

    Given the complex liability landscape, it is crucial for individuals involved in e-scooter accidents to consult with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney. Legal expertise is essential for navigating the intricacies of liability and compensation claims, ensuring that victims receive the justice and financial support they deserve.

    Individuals affected by e-scooter accidents in Florida should seek legal advice to understand their rights and explore their options for compensation. John Leighton is a board-certified personal injury attorney specializing in catastrophic injuries. Schedule a consultation now.

    Article by:

    John Leighton

    A nationally-recognized trial lawyer who handles catastrophic injury and death cases. He manages Leighton Law, P.A. trial lawyers, with offices in Miami and Orlando, Florida. He is President of The National Crime Victim Bar Association, author of the 2-volume textbook,Litigating Premises Security Cases, and past Chairman of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America’s Motor Vehicle, Highway & Premises Liability Section. Having won some of the largest verdicts in Florida history, Mr. Leighton is listed inThe Best Lawyers in America (14 years), “Top Lawyers” in the South Florida Legal Guide (15 years), Top 100 Florida SuperLawyer™ and Florida SuperLawyers (14 years), “Orlando Legal Elite” by Orlando Style magazine, and FloridaTrend magazine “Florida Legal Elite


      How much is :