Wear a helmet. It’s that simple.
We can’t stress this enough. Don’t wait for a new study to prove what ESUK have been saying for a long, long time. Wear a helmet.
New research from UCLA finds 1 in 3 people involved in accidents with electric scooters sustain serious injuries and end up in the hospital.
Fractures, head injuries and soft-tissue injuries were the most common.
Researchers also found only about 4 percent injured scooter riders were wearing helmets.
“In this study of a case series, 249 patients presented to the emergency department with injuries associated with electric scooter use during a 1-year period, with 10.8% of patients younger than 18 years,” says the paper by Tarak K. Trivedi, Charles Liu, and Anna Liza M. Antonio, which was published on January 25th.
“The most common injuries were fractures (31.7%), head injuries (40.2%), and soft-tissue injuries (27.7%).”
“Only 10 riders were documented as wearing a helmet, constituting 4.4% of all riders,” the report notes. “Twelve patients (4.8%) had physician-documented intoxication or a blood alcohol level greater than 0.05%.”
In addition to clinical work, the research team took to L.A. streets and sidewalks to document the wayward conduct of scooter users. “A total of 193 scooter riders were observed during 3 public observation sessions, and the following unsafe riding practices were observed: no helmet use (182 riders [94.3%]), tandem riding (15 riders [7.8%]), and failure to comply with traffic laws (18 riders [9.3%]). Additionally, many riders were observed to be riding on the sidewalk (51 riders [26.4%]), where scooter use is prohibited.
Conclusion: “Riders share roads with fast-moving vehicular traffic but appear to underestimate hazards.” As a result, researchers say, new laws are likely needed to curtail the urban onslaught.
“While riders of electric scooters in California are required to be at least 16 years old by state law and 18 years old by company rental agreements, we found that 10.8% of electric scooter injuries were in patients younger than 18 years. This suggests that current self-enforced regulations imposed by private electric scooter companies may be inadequate.”
Further research, the report says, is needed to “examine the effects of bikeway availability and speed limits, which may modify the occurrence of injuries associated with electric scooter use. It would also be meaningful to characterise the costs incurred by patients and the health care system from trauma associated with electric scooter use.”
The study adds: “Among scooter riders, the most common mechanisms of injury were fall (183 riders [80.2%]), collision with an object (25 riders [11.0%]), and being hit by a moving vehicle or object (20 riders [8.8%]). “