Hate Them or Love Them – Should Scooters Be Banned?
Whether they are whizzing by you or you are riding one, scooters have clearly arrived in Fort Lauderdale. However, these devices also carry many risks for both the rider and anyone that he or she encounters on their journey. For many people, these risks are outweighed by the convenience of being able to rent the inexpensive energy-efficient devices from a smartphone app and leave them on a sidewalk when they’re done. In fact, scooters have become so popular that HB 453 is before Florida legislators, a Bill which would require cities throughout Florida to allow electric scooter operators who meet insurance requirements to operate the scooters within them.
Cities in Florida have taken different approaches to this popular method of transportation but interestingly, and in contrast with the Bill, even cities that have previously allowed these devices are considering pulling away from them. The South Florida Sun Sentinel recently reported that the city of Fort Lauderdale, which has been one of the only cities in Florida that allows scooters, is reconsidering its fledgling scooter program. The reason for this push back from permanently implementing scooters is likely due to the unanticipated result of the many citizens who have become disgruntled with them. While some residents have praised the experimental program, emails have reportedly flooded Fort Lauderdale’s City Hall from residents who are unhappy with the allowance of these transportation devices.
What Are Common Complaints About Scooters?
Critics of scooters often make similar arguments against them which include:
- They hinder accessibility. Scooters are parked on the sidewalk which can block access to businesses and parked cars as well posing a trip hazard.
- They present a risk to pedestrians. Unlike a car, there is no official training for operating a scooter. Critics argue that inexperience can lead scooter operators to inadvertently run into pedestrians or force them off the sidewalk in an effort to avoid being hit.
- Scooter users don’t follow rules. While scooter apps commonly stipulate rules to new app users, many scooter operators do not wear helmets. Further, scooter people operate them while underage and even allow multiple people to ride the same scooter.
- Users operate scooters while impaired. Because scooters are not perceived as being a “real” vehicle, even people who would never drive a car after drinking may feel comfortable operating a scooter.
Allow Us to Help.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a scooter accident, the Fort Lauderdale personal injury attorneys at The Pendas Law Firm can help. Because this means of transportation has recently risen in popularity, it can be more difficult to understand where to turn as this is such a new legal matter. However, you should understand that negligence is negligence, and if someone else was at fault, you can hold them accountable and ensure that you are compensated for the pain and suffering you have experienced. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
The Pendas Law Firm also represents clients in the Orlando, Jacksonville, Miami, Fort Myers, Tampa, Bradenton and Daytona areas.