Rentable electric scooters have become popular among tourists, commuters and residents alike in Raleigh, North Carolina. After two companies, Bird and Lime, debuted their dockless rideshare scooters in the city, ridership blossomed from a few dozen to thousands in months.
Unfortunately, the increase in electric scooters has had a corresponding spike in related accidents and injuries. Consumer Reports states that since late 2017, over 1,500 people have suffered injuries in electric scooter accidents around the U.S.
Common electric scooter accident injuries
Electric scooter accidents happen for many of the same reasons as other types of car accidents - namely, human error. Neglect, recklessness and intent to harm can lead to vehicle-scooter collisions and single-scooter accidents. Scooter accidents can cause serious and fatal personal injuries, including the following:
- Traumatic injuries to the head, skull and brain
- Permanent spinal cord damage and related disabilities
- Multiple broken bones
- Serious road rash and traumatic tattooing
- Face and mouth injuries
Distracted drivers, speeding, potholes, roadway defects, broken traffic rules and defective scooters could all contribute to e-scooter wrecks in Raleigh. Identifying the cause of the accident and injuries may allow a victim to seek financial recompense from the at-fault party.
Financial recovery for e-scooter accident victims
The civil justice system in North Carolina permits vehicle accident victims to pursue financial damages from one or multiple parties. Damages refer to money that can pay for hospital bills, reimburse lost wages and make up for noneconomic damages. To have grounds for a lawsuit, a victim will need to prove the following four elements:
- The defendant owed a duty of care.
- The defendant acted negligently.
- The victim suffered damages.
- The defendant's negligence caused the damages.
The victim must bring the personal injury claim within three years of the e-scooter accident. Bringing a claim involves naming the at-fault party, providing evidence of negligence, describing what caused the collision and listing the amount of the desired settlement. The victim or an attorney will include this information in the filing paperwork and file it with the correct county court within the deadline.