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E-scooter Rentals, Statistics and Safety in Fort Pierce

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The popularity of individual motorized transportation is on the rise, and more attention is being focused on a relatively new term used to describe this trend in transportation: micromobility. According to Forbes, statistics show that 46 percent of automobile trips in the United States are three miles or less, and that approximately 60 percent of all trips within the United States are five miles or less. Given these statistics, and considering obstacles – such as traffic, parking, gasoline costs – that exist in many areas for traditional modes of transportation (such as cars, SUVs and buses), the increasing popularity of motorized individual transportation devices is not surprising.

Last fall, as reported by WPTV, Fort Pierce launched  a new electric scooter share program. Encouraged by the popularity of its bike share program, the city embarked on the e-scooter program in September. The initial plan included 150 scooters, to operate using “geo-fencing,” which defines where the scooters operate.

The basic rules of e-scooter rental included:

  • downloading an app to rent and ride
  • paying a fee to unlock the scooter, along with the fee per mile to ride
  • riders must be 18 years of age or older

The rollout of the e-scooter share program was a success, with the City planning to double the number of scooters by the end of January, according to TCPalm.com.

E-Scooter Statistics for Fort Pierce

As of late December, according to TCPalm.com:

  • over 14,000 people had rented e-scooters
  • more than 55 percent of e-scooter users lived in Fort Pierce
  • average e-scooter ride time was 30 minutes

E-Scooter Safety

As a relatively new and increasingly popular mode of transportation, e-scooter safety is a concern across the Sunshine State. According to the South Florida SunSentinel, the number of head and facial injuries for e-scooter riders has tripled over the past decade.

On the national level, the SunSentinel reported on a recent study that surveyed injuries among almost 40,000 scooter riders. This report revealed:

  • more than a third of the injuries were head injuries
  • only 2 to 4 percent of the injured riders were wearing helmets when they got hurt.

Florida Law – Micromobility Devices and Motorized Scooters

Under Florida law, a micromobility device includes one that is reserved electronically (by online application, website or software) for private use.  By definition, micromobility devices are reserved by users for “point-to-point trips,” and must travel at speeds of 20 mile per hour or less. Motorized and scooters are also specifically included in the definition of micromobility devices.

Under Florida law, a motorized scooter is a motorized vehicle or micromobility device powered by  that is designed to travel on not more than three wheels. A motorized scooter, by definition, is not capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed greater than 20 miles per hour on level ground.

Under Florida law, operators of motorized scooters and micromobility devices generally have the same rights and responsibilities as bicycle riders. Additional responsibilities may be imposed by local governmental authorities.

For More Information

If you would like to know more about e-scooter facts, regulations and safety, contact Sholtes Law, PLLC. If you have been involved in an accident involving a micromobility device or motorized scooter, contact us to speak with an experienced Fort Pierce personal injury lawyer.

 

Resource:

tcpalm.com/story/news/local/shaping-our-future/roads/2019/12/23/fort-pierce-wants-more-e-scooters-new-year/2705207001/

sun-sentinel.com/health/fl-ne-scooter-injuries-20200201-dsyh33jftzevflcxdnw4g66voa-story.html

wptv.com/news/region-st-lucie-county/fort-pierce/fort-pierce-launching-scooter-share-program

forbes.com/sites/ellistalton/2020/01/07/cities-need-to-rethink-micromobility-to-ensure-it-works-for-all/#4dae8cb72ebf

https://www.saintlucielawyer.com/e-bike-basics/

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