Electric Scooter Accidents And Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is one of the worst kinds of injury that can result from a traffic accident. The mildest form of TBI is concussion, which is disruptive enough; it can result in months or years of headaches, sensitivity to light, impaired memory, and mood disturbances. More severe TBIs can lead to permanent disability or can even be fatal. In cars, air bags and seat belts are effective at protecting against TBI, because they reduce the risk that the head will strike a solid object at high speed. Motorcycle riders and bicyclists are at higher risk of TBI, but helmets can prevent TBI or reduce its severity in many accidents. Several lawsuits in Florida sought damages for people who suffered severe brain injuries after riding electric scooters. Florida law does not require you to wear a helmet when riding an electric scooter, as long as the scooter’s maximum speed is 30 miles per hour or less; meanwhile, it is legal to ride these scooters on roads with vehicular traffic, just as it is with bicycles. To find out more about getting justice for TBI patients injured in motorcycle, bicycle, or electric scooter accidents, contact a Jacksonville catastrophic injury lawyer.
Electric Scooter Laws Have Changed, but Dangers Remain
Lime scooters enable riders to pick them up and drop them off in a variety of locations; they use GPS navigation to determine routes through an app on the rider’s phone, and Lime neither provides helmets. The scooters have attracted controversy because their routes, which riders cannot override, lead riders through busy traffic and into danger, and this has caused severe head injuries and TBI in Lime scooter users.
What happened to Ashanti Jordan is one of the most catastrophic injuries imaginable. In late 2018, she rode a Lime scooter home from work at Broward Health, since the weather was colder than normal, and none of her coworkers were available to give her a ride home. Following the GPS directions on the Lime app, she was riding in the street in a residential neighborhood, when her scooter collided with a car; she suffered a fractured skull, several fractured ribs, and a severe TBI. The brain swelling was so severe that doctors could only keep her alive by removing part of her skull. She was still in a coma more than a year after the accident.
Jordan’s mother sued the Lime scooter company for product liability; hers was one of many lawsuits against the company. In February 2020, local laws removed Lime scooters from Florida streets, but this was due as much to the pandemic as to the dangers of the scooters. In late 2021, electric scooters returned to some Florida municipalities. Helmets are still not required, but the new scooters cannot exceed speeds of 12 miles per hour.
Let Us Help You Today
A catastrophic injury lawyer can help you recover damages if someone in your family suffered a TBI in a motorcycle, bicycle, or scooter accident. Contact Douglas & Douglas in Jacksonville, Florida for a free consultation.