Many cities including the metro Atlanta region have seen a boom in the number of e – scooter riders, but limits on the operations of these vehicles mean that many of these riders choose to ride on sidewalks, increasing their risks of being involved in pedestrian accidents.
Around the country, there has been an increase in the number of e – scooter riders, and cities have welcomed the expansion of this community because that reduces the stress on motor vehicle traffic, especially in congested cities like Atlanta. However, many cities have restricted the roads that these vehicles can be operated on. This means riders often choose to ride on sidewalks, placing them in direct conflict with pedestrians, and increasing their chances of being involved in pedestrian accidents. In fact, according to a new study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, there has been an increase in the number of e – scooter personal injuries and accidents involving pedestrians.
In most cities, the laws allow persons to ride e- scooters on roads where the speed limit is 35 miles per hour or less. That restricts the operation of ride vehicles to bike lanes and bike paths. In areas where it is not possible to ride on bike lanes, e – scooter riders prefer to ride on sidewalks. This may be safe for the scooter rider, but involves increased risks for pedestrians, especially when the e-scooter is being operated at high speeds. Most riders do tend to lower their speeds when they are riding on sidewalks as compared to riding in a bicycle lane. Even so, the potential risk of personal injuries to pedestrians is very real. Some cities have placed greater speed restrictions on privately operated scooters that are being operated on sidewalks in order to reduce the risk of personal injuries to pedestrians in accidents with the scooters. Other cities are even considering a complete ban on e – scooters on sidewalks.
In Atlanta, you are allowed to ride an e – scooter provided you are above the age of 15. Teens below the age of 16 riding an e – scooter are required to wear a helmet while riding. Helmets must meet standards set by the Georgia Department of Transportation. Atlanta, however, does not allow e – scooter riders to ride on sidewalks. You may only ride on bicycle lanes, bicycle paths or any roads where the speed limit is below 35 miles per hour.
E – scooter riders must be responsible and ride only where they are legally permitted to do so. Having passengers on your e – scooter, for instance, is a major accident and personal injury risk. You should avoid taking such a risk. An e – scooter is a vehicle like any other, and riders must follow all traffic rules and regulations. Riding beyond the speed limit, failure to obey traffic lights, failure to yield at intersections and failure to look out for pedestrians – all of these can increase the risks of an accident that can injure pedestrians.
The Atlanta car crash attorneys at Katz Personal Injury Lawyers are dedicated to the representation of persons injured in car accidents in the metro Atlanta region and across Georgia. If you or a loved one have suffered injuries in a car accident, talk to a lawyer at our firm and determine if you have legal options to a claim for damages. You may be eligible for compensation that includes medical expenses, lost income and other types of damages. Talk to an attorney at our firm and discuss your case.