As an Austin resident, you are well aware of the electric scooter explosion. Since last year, they have become a part of city streets and sidewalks. But you may not be aware of the risk in riding them.
Scooters have grown popular as an alternative form of transportation. This is despite the danger they pose to riders. A report released earlier this year tracked injuries caused by scooters in Austin. Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) gathered reports over three months of scooter crashes in Austin. Here is some of what they found:
- Over the three months, 190 people involved in crashes received some kind of injury.
- 48% of these involved a head injury.
- 15% suffered a traumatic brain injury.
- Of 271 people researched, only one wore a helmet while riding.
Quick growth of popularity
After Austin started giving electric scooter companies licenses to operate, the companies brought about 15,000 scooters into the city. With the quick growth, the city has struggled to keep up with regulation. Most of the companies cap speed at 15 miles per hour. On the campus of the University of Texas at Austin, the scooters cannot go over eight miles per hour. But beyond that, riders can be any age and can ride on either streets or sidewalks with the scooters.
Adjusting to the electric scooter growth
As Austin adjusts to this growth of electric scooters, it will have to adjust to the negative consequences as well. There is currently no rule for adult scooter riders to wear helmets. And with scooters allowed on roads, riders run the risk of a collision with a car or truck.
Scooters do not seem to be going anywhere. Even with the danger of injury, people still ride them. Of the 190 people injured, 38% said they will still use scooters.
Make sure you know the risks before riding.