Electric scooters, or “e-scooters,” are another rideshare option for locals and visitors in Denver. Other cities like Boulder have put a moratorium on the e-scooters rides while they evaluate the safety concerns. For a rider in downtown Denver, a recent e-scooter ride turned fatal in a hit and run accident.
Fatal E-Scooter Accident in Denver
In the early morning hours of Labor Day 2020, a pair of scooter riders were going down Arapahoe Street. According to news reports, a silver Chevrolet Cobalt crashed into the riders, killing one rider and sending the other to the hospital.
The driver of the vehicle did not stop at the scene of the accident, as required by Colorado law. Instead, the driver turned on Speer Boulevard and fled the scene. Police are looking for the suspect in the hit and run accident. Police say the vehicle likely has damage to the front, hood, and windshield. Denver Police Department released an image of the suspect's vehicle on their Twitter account.
Are E-Scooters Dangerous to Riders
In August of 2019, Denver's first fatal scooter accident was reported. According to a study by Denver Public Works, between August 2018 to January 2019, about 60% of people surveyed have been involved in a crash with an e-scooter or had a “near miss.”
E-scooter accidents can be dangerous because of a number of factors that riders may not consider. Even though the device appears simple, new riders may not be familiar with balancing on the small foot stand area while accelerating and braking. The scooters can be powerful but they are also inconsistent. There have also been complaints of steering and motors locking up unexpectedly, causing crashes.
Tourists who are visiting Denver may not consider the dangers of riding a scooter, especially if they have been drinking, smoking marijuana, or sampling edibles. Many riders also ride around with headphones, which distract the rider from other pedestrians, cyclists, and vehicles.
E-scooter riders often fail to put on a helmet, putting them at risk of a head injury, even in a minor crash. Even experienced e-scooter riders may not be familiar with the traffic laws for e-scooters, especially when the state and cities keep changing how they regulate these new forms of transportation. A temporary ban on dockless e-scooters in Boulder is set to end in October.
Driver Inexperience Around E-Scooters
Not all e-scooter accidents are caused by riders. Negligent drivers who hit a scooter can cause serious or fatal injuries. Drivers may not be used to watching out for e-scooter drivers but they have a duty of care to others on the road. Many accidents caused by drivers hitting cyclists, pedestrians, or scooter riders involve distracted driving.
The accident above occurred at just after 1:30 am on a holiday weekend. There is a chance the driver may have been impaired when involved in the accident. Many alcohol-related accidents occur in the evening or early morning hours, with spikes in drunk driving accidents around holidays like Memorial Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day.
Denver Scooter Accident Lawyer
E-scooter companies like to put the risk and burden of an accident solely on the riders. However, the e-scooter companies may share some of the blame in these accidents, allowing people to ride them without experience, without training, and without a helmet. The attorneys at accidentdenver.com have successfully represented injury victims who were involved in bike and scooter accidents in Denver, Boulder, and throughout Colorado. Our experienced attorneys will fight to get the maximum compensation available for your injuries. Contact us today for a free consultation.