As Bird and Lime gain popularity in cities like San Antonio, e-scooter accidents are becoming more and more common. Scooter riders pose a danger to themselves and other pedestrians on the sidewalks. On top of that, liability issues with rideshare companies can be complex and difficult to navigate. If you were injured because of a negligent scooter rider because you were riding a defective scooter, a Bird scooter accident lawyer at Brylak Law may be able to help you obtain compensation.
Who Is Liable in an Electric Scooter Accident?
Texas law doesn’t really have any clear precedents when it comes to electric scooter accidents, which makes establishing liability difficult. Unfortunately, this confusion is exploitable. When an accident does occur, it’s likely that each party will try to avoid liability, which could lead to the injured party ending up in legal limbo while the courts try to sort out the mess.
If You Were Injured While Riding an Electric Scooter
It happens often that those who are riding electric scooters themselves suffer serious injuries. In this case, it’s a matter of taking a look at the other parties involved:
- Scooter rider is hit by a vehicle. In this case, a determination will be made as to whether or not the vehicle was abiding by the laws of traffic. In cases where they weren’t, they can be held liable for the injuries to the scooter rider and the claim would go against their auto liability coverage, same as it would for a pedestrian.
- Scooter rider is injured by a faulty scooter. If the scooter malfunctions and causes injury to the rider, the scooter company can be held liable for the injury. Neither Bird nor Lime has diagnostics on their scooters that will prevent customers from using scooters which have (for example) faulty brakes. If a scooter rider is injured, they can sue the scooter company under product liability law.
- Obstructions and road hazards. In some cases, cracked pavement, holes in the ground, or debris and equipment left by business owners can create an unreasonable danger to those on scooters. In these cases, the business owners may be held liable on the theory of premises liability. If the pavement itself is the problem, it may be possible to sue the city.
- Some other party. In some cases, a pedestrian, cyclist, or another party may interfere with the scooter’s path causing injury to the driver. Dogs also like to chase scooters and sometimes cause injuries to riders.
If You Were Injured by Someone on an Electric Scooter
Both Bird and Lime supply riders with a user agreement or liability waiver. This user agreement stipulates that they are solely liable for any accidents or injuries that they cause. The legality of this agreement is debatable, however, since it involves nameless third parties who didn’t agree to anything. That being said, if a driver injures someone in a rental car, the rental car company is only liable if they committed some kind of negligence:
- Hit by scooter rider. If you were hit by a scooter rider, chances are, the scooter rider is at fault. Bird and Lime do not have liability when it comes to negligently driven scooters. You can, however, sue the rider who caused your injuries.
- Accidents indirectly caused by scooters. Bird and Lime scooters can go up to 15 mph. Pedestrians usually walk at around 5 mph. Add cars to the mix and you have a perfect storm of potential accidents. Scooters are small and hard to see. When they are negligently ridden, drivers will attempt to swerve to miss them and can injure others in the process.
- Scooter was not parked properly. Sometimes, riders will leave their scooters in the middle of sidewalks or other locations where they pose a danger.
Since scooters are app-driven, it is possible to determine who exactly caused the injuries when the scooter rider is responsible. A San Antonio Bird scooter accident lawyer can subpoena this information, connecting GPS with user history to establish who was present at the scene.
Talk to a Bird Scooter Accident Lawyer Today
If you or a loved on suffered injury in an electric scooter accident, talk to Brylak Law today. We can help.