According to Alberta Health Services, one person is seriously injured and admitted to the hospital per 100,000 e-scooter rides. Though e-scooters aren’t the first thing most people think of when they think of personal injury cases, they can still create them.
Here’s what you need to know about e-scooter liability.
What kinds of personal injury cases arise from e-scooter use?
Most injuries come from e-scooter riders who fall off the device. However, there have been cases where riders have collided with pedestrians, or where riders have gotten into accidents with motor vehicles.
In addition, in areas like Calgary where services like Lime exist, injuries can arise when riders carelessly leave scooters in roadways and sidewalks rather than taking the time to properly dock them.
If the scooter case arose as the result of a collision with a motor vehicle than the case may well play out just like a bicycle or pedestrian accident injury case. If the vehicle was at-fault then you can sue the drivers for your injuries. If you got injured while failing to follow traffic laws then you may have a harder time recovering money, or won’t be able to recover as much money.
If a scooter and a pedestrian collide then again, this may be treated like a normal personal injury case. Unfortunately neither pedestrian or rider are likely to be covered by insurance, which is the source of most of the money in a Calgary personal injury case.
Who is liable if an undocked rental e-scooter causes an injury?
This is an area of the law which is still evolving as there have not been many cases where this has happened. Theoretically the rider who last rented the scooter could still be held liable, and that would be information that could potentially be found by tracking app data. But, again, they’re not likely to have an insurance policy that would cover this eventuality.
Whether or not the company could be held liable is also a matter for some debate. Given the scooter company’s policies on rental would either encourage or allow this behavior a case could be made for liability, but it is too soon to tell whether that argument would result in a winning case.
Who is liable if you fall while using a scooter?
It depends on the reason for your fall. If the scooter malfunctions then both the owner of the scooter (if you’re renting it) and the manufacturer might be held responsible. The same is true if a rental scooter has not been properly maintained and the lack of maintenance has caused the accident.
Keep in mind if you try to sue either company they will work hard to scrutinize your own behavior while on board, and will attempt to pass the entire accident off as rider error.
What are the most common injuries while using an e-scooter?
Fractures, neck injuries, head injuries, face injuries, and mouth injuries are the most common injuries.
Do you need help with an e-scooter case?
Personal injury cases are always complex. They grow even more complex when you’re dealing with emergent technologies and modes of transportation like the rise of e-scooter use in Calgary.
If you need help, contact Merchant Law today. Our experienced attorneys know how to handle even the most complex case, even in areas of the law that are not established. We have the skills to help you bring your case to its most positive possible conclusion.