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Saturday, July 20, 2024

Uninsured E-scooters: Are They a Safety Hazard on Our Streets?

Cycle SOS, the leading cycling accident claims specialists in the UK, is shedding light on the safety risks and legal implications associated with uninsured e-scooters on our streets.

E-scooters have swiftly gained popularity in the UK, attracting commuters and leisure-seekers with their stylish design and eco-friendly appeal. These two-wheeled devices can now be seen weaving through traffic and clustered on pavements, offering a novel solution to urban mobility and a fun alternative to traditional transportation.

However, the surge in e-scooter usage has come with its share of drawbacks. As more people embrace this mode of transport, accidents involving e-scooters have significantly increased. From minor incidents to serious injuries, concerns about safety are growing, highlighting the need for greater awareness and regulation.

According to reports, there were 1,349 collisions involving e-scooters up until June 2022, representing a 27% increase compared to the previous period. Out of these collisions, over 1,000 involved a third party, resulting in 342 third-party casualties. Shockingly, there were 11 rider fatalities and one third-party fatality. The majority of those injured are pedestrians and cyclists.

Navigating the legal landscape surrounding e-scooter usage is complex. Only e-scooters sanctioned under the Trials authorised by the Electric Scooter Trials & Traffic Signs Regulations 2020 are legally permitted on the highway, providing a green alternative to cars and public transport. However, all other e-scooters being used are considered illegal, making it nearly impossible to insure them. This paradox leaves riders and pedestrians in a precarious position.

Legally sanctioned e-scooters can only be ridden by individuals aged 16 or over, holding at least a provisional licence. Helmets are not mandatory, and these machines must not exceed 15.5mph, weigh over 55kg, or have a motor output exceeding 500 watts (double that of e-bikes).

The lack of insurance for illegally ridden e-scooters carries significant implications. Riders are personally liable for any accidents, injuries, or losses they cause, a risk often overlooked by those hopping onto an e-scooter. For victims of e-scooter accidents, claiming compensation can be complex and challenging because the rider, even if identified, is unlikely to have the financial resources to fulfill the claim. In such cases, the claim may be directed to the Motor Insurers Bureau, which compensates victims of uninsured and untraced motorists.

Given the risks posed by uninsured e-scooters, it is crucial to protect oneself. One approach is to check if your Home and Contents insurance or any bespoke Cycle Insurance includes an Unsatisfied Judgment Recovery provision. These coverages can provide a safety net in the event of an accident with an uninsured e-scooter, covering medical expenses and other costs.

However, insurance is not a panacea. While it can offer financial protection, it cannot prevent accidents from occurring. Therefore, it is essential for all road users to practice safe driving and riding habits, and for e-scooter riders to understand and adhere to the rules of the road.

If you find yourself involved in an e-scooter accident, seeking legal assistance immediately is crucial. Prompt action significantly improves the chances of a successful claim, as preserving evidence is vital. Whether it’s capturing photographs of the accident scene, gathering witness statements, or obtaining medical records, every piece of evidence strengthens your case. However, dealing with the aftermath of an accident can be overwhelming, which is where Cycle SOS can provide assistance. Bob Coupland, Head of Bike Claims at Cycle SOS, emphasises their commitment to supporting cyclists in the event of an accident and navigating the challenges posed by the rise of e-scooters.

Cycle SOS handles the legal aspects of your claim, including evidence gathering and negotiating with insurance companies, allowing you to focus on your recovery. To learn more about Cycle SOS and the support they offer, visit their website at https://www.cycle-sos.co.uk/.

Sam Allcock
Sam Allcockhttps://businesslancashire.co.uk/
Sam Allcock is a highly regarded digital entrepreneur with over 20 years’ experience in online marketing for some of the World’s biggest brands. He has extensive knowledge and experience in SEO and digital marketing. He is based in Cheshire but has an interest in all things going on in the North West and enjoys contributing local news to the site.
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