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5 Laws That Help Prevent Electric Scooter Accidents in Colorado

Posted on in Personal Injury

Larimer County e-scooter accident attorney

Like them, love them, or downright hate them, electric scooters will not be leaving Colorado anytime soon. By now, you have probably heard of Bird, Lyft, or Lime, three of the most popular e-scooter rental companies. Fundamentally, these companies do not differ much: Customers use a phone application to rent a scooter for a given amount of time by linking some form of online payment. In the last five years, these e-scooters have gone from fun novelty to a major mode of transportation. With such rapid implementation nationwide, this new mode of transportation has spread throughout the United States more quickly than current laws can keep up, leaving many states and cities with a patchwork of hastily adopted legislation. Although the technology of electronic transportation devices such as these is ever-changing, as with any motorized device, there is the potential for accidents with minor to serious injuries. Below are some answers to commonly asked questions regarding e-scooters that can help users stay safe and avoid collisions with other vehicles or scooters.

Current E-Scooter Laws

The legality of riding these electric scooters varies from county to county, even city to city. In Breckenridge, for example, e-scooter businesses are banned entirely, although “the ban does not apply to people who own their electric scooters,” according to KKTV. The city of Boulder also placed a moratorium on issuing business licenses to commercial e-scooter companies. However, the original pause expired in April 2020. While electric scooters do not currently face any form of state-wide ban, there are some regulations that riders should understand to help prevent a traffic accident.

On May 23, 2019, the Colorado General Assembly passed a bill that reclassified electric scooters from “toy vehicles” to “vehicles.” According to the Denver City Council, here are several ways that the law impacts electric scooters and their drivers:

  1. If the speed limit in your vicinity is 30 mph or less, an electric scooter must be operated on the road. If the speed limit is greater than 30 mph, an electric scooter can be operated on the sidewalk.

  2. When riding on the sidewalk, the electric scooter must be operated at a speed of 6 mph or less.

  3. When traveling on the road, scooter operators are required to utilize hand signals to indicate desired turning direction like bicycles.

  4. Electric scooter operators must obey all posted signage, including—but not limited to—stop, yield, and no parking signs.

  5. An electric scooter operator can be cited for traffic violations just like a bike rider. 

Electric Scooters in a Collision

Even though the above list is subject to change, it is important to be mindful of these statewide regulations, as well as the rules of the road in your city. Now that summer is upon us, you may find yourself riding one of these e-scooters. While you should always remember to obey the traffic laws to avoid a citation, it is also crucial to protect yourself from accidents. Warm weather is known to bring out more drivers, pedestrians, and other vehicle operators, and the Denver City Council stated that “63 percent of [surveyed] respondents reported they have been involved in a crash or near-miss with an electric scooter.” This high percentage may be due to distracted or intoxicated drivers not paying attention or noticing a scooter on the road until it is too late, causing a collision. 

Contact a Larimer County Personal Injury Attorney

If you or a loved one has sustained an injury while riding an electric scooter, you may be entitled to financial compensation. With ever-changing laws, Hoggatt Law Office, P.C. can help you determine liability after a collision. In some cases, your crash may have been caused by the negligent actions of a motorist. Our diligent Fort Collins e-scooter accident lawyers have more than two decades of experience fighting for the rights of accident victims. Call us today at 970-225-2190 to set up your free consultation.

 

Sources:
https://www.kktv.com/content/news/Colorado-city-bans-electric-scooters-as-popularity-grows-549811111.html
https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/hb19-1221
https://www.denvergov.org/content/denvergov/en/denver-city-council/council-members/at-large-2/news/2019/electric-scooter-data---survey-results-.html

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Hoggatt Law Office, P.C.

970-225-2190 | 1-800-664-3151

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Fort Collins, CO 80524

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