Since early 2018, Austin and other cities across the country have seen an increase in the number of electronic scooters on city streets. The increasing popularity of electronic scooters has led to a growing number of electronic scooter-related injuries. Now, in the span of just six days, at least eight lawsuits were filed against electronic scooter companies by individuals who claim they were injured while riding an electronic scooter in the city of Austin. The defendants include Bird, Lime, and Jump, some of the best known electronic scooter companies in the United States.
Recent data shows that the use of e-scooters in Dallas, Texas since city approval of bike share companies have caused a $1.4 million hike in hospital costs since June of 2018. The study by Baylor Scott & White seems to blame the high injury rates on the lack of helmets used by riders of these rentable e-scooters.
Throughout the country, including several cities in Texas, e-scooters are the newest alternative to the usual forms of public transportation. E-scooters are dockless electronic scooters. These scooters allow users to rent them by smartphone app and the rider can leave the scooter wherever they want when they are done. The scooters can travel as fast as 15 miles per hour. The e-scooter companies contend that the scooters offer users an environmentally friendly and efficient means of transportation. However, as the e-scooters increase in popularity, so have safety concerns for both users and pedestrians.