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E-scooters in Florida: A Growing Dilemma

e-scooter, accident, florida, micromobility, GOLDLAW

E-scooters have rapidly become a popular mode of transportation in Florida’s urban areas, lauded for their convenience and eco-friendly benefits. As cities like Miami, Tampa, and Orlando embrace this new trend, the surge in e-scooter usage has brought a significant, albeit unintended consequence: a rise in accidents.

This growing trend has raised concerns among many, including city officials, medical professionals, and the public at large. Understanding the reasons behind the increase in accidents, types of injuries sustained, and the demographic most affected is crucial. In addition, examining current laws/regulations, insurance implications, and potential solutions may also provide a comprehensive view of how Florida can address this pressing issue.

Why the rise in Accidents?

The rise in accidents can be attributed to several factors:

1. Increased popularity

E-scooters have become popular across the globe. Why?

  • Affordability – Fully electric scooters are MUCH more affordable than gas-powered vehicles, especially if they are being used only to cover short distances.

    • Entry-level e-scooters can cost as little as $350.00.

    • Very little maintenance is required.

  • They are Environmentally Friendly – They produce zero emissions, because they rely on a rechargeable battery and not standard fuels.

  • Ease of Operation – Compared to motorcyles/mopeds, e-scooters are simple to operate. No license is required, – at this point – and lessons are not required. In most cases, you can take it out of the box, and begin riding immediately.

  • Portability – e-scooters are easy to transport and stow away, as they take up little space.

2. Lack of Infrastructure

Many cities lack dedicated lanes or paths for e-scooters, forcing riders to share roads with cars and pedestrians, leading to higher numbers of accidents. According to the University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center, other infrastructure issues leading to accidents include:

  • Potholes

  • Curbs

  • Sidewalks

  • Lack of bike lanes

  • Car/truck traffic volume

3. Driver/User Inexperience

Many riders, especially young riders, may not be familiar with traffic laws or safe riding practices. This can lead to driver panic, resulting in poor decision-making, which often leads to the cause of accidents.

4. Distracted Riding

Several distractions contribute significantly to e-scooter accidents:

  • Smartphone Use – Texting, making phone calls, using apps, and even just holding a phone can divert a rider’s attention from the road and competing traffic.

  • Headphones/Earbuds – Listening to music/podcasts can prevent riders from hearing approaching vehicles, horns, sirens, and other warning signals.

  • Conversation – Talking to other riders can lead to inattention

  • Sightseeing/Taking Pictures – Riders, especially tourists, are often tempted to look around or take photos/video while riding, taking their focus off safe operation.

Types of Injuries seen in E-scooter Accidents

E-scooter accidents often result in a variety of injuries, from minor to severe. Common injuries include:

  • Fractures and Broken Bones

  • Head and neck injuries, including concussions and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)

  • Lacerations and abrasions/”road rash”

  • Sprains and strains

  • Dental Injuries

Here is some additional data from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC):

  • Injuries due to e-scooter accidents continue to increase:

    • Injuries in 2022 rose 22% over the amount of injuries in 2021.

    • Nearly half, – 46% – of all estimated e-scooter/bike injuries from 2017 – 2022 occurred in 2022 alone

    • The CPSC is aware of 233 deaths associated with “micromobility” devices from 2017 – 2022, although reporting is ongoing and incomplete.

    • There were an estimated 360,800 emergency department visits related to all micromobility devices from 2017 – 2022.

Most Affected Areas in Florida

Areas most affected by e-scooter accidents are densely populated urban areas that are also tourist havens like Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, and Orlando. Factors contributing to the high number of accidents include:

  • Heavy traffic

  • Inadequate bike lanes

  • High numbers of tourists unfamiliar with local traffic laws.


E-scooter regulations vary widely across Florida. Some cities, including Hollywood and Key Biscayne have banned e-scooters and scooter companies to cut down on accidents. Others have begun to consider speed limits as a means to quell the problem.

The legal situation surrounding e-scooters and bikes is confusing, to say the least. State law allows for scooters, but leaves much of the regulating up to local governments, where lawmakers have struggled to decide where they should go. Some cities have implemented specific rules regarding speed limits, helmet usage, and age restrictions. However, enforcement remains a major challenge, compliance is inconsistent at best, and the state legislature has expressed a desire that local communities not be able to enact their own legislation.

Insurance Implications

The insurance situation for e-scooters is extremely complex. Many personal injury protection (PIP) policies do not cover e-scooter injuries, leaving riders responsible for their medical expenses. Liability issues can also be contentious, particularly with accidents involving other vehicles or pedestrians. Some e-scooter companies offer limited insurance coverage, but it often falls short of covering substantial medical costs or property damage. At the end of the day, because e-scooters/bikes are NOT classified as motor vehicles in Florida, there is NO legal requirement for owners to carry insurance.

The Future?

The rise in e-scooter accidents in Florida presents a complex challenge that demands a multifaceted approach. The increasing popularity of e-scooters, matched with inadequate infrastructure and inconsistent regulation, has led to a noticeable increase in accidents and injuries. Addressing this issue requires concerted efforts in enhancing urban infrastructure, enforcing strict regulations, and raising public awareness about safe riding practices. Technological innovations and improved insurance policy also play a crucial role in mitigating risks. By adopting strategies like these, Florida can hopefully ensure more sustainable urban mobility, benefiting residents and visitors alike.

Choose GOLDLAW For Your E-scooter Accident Claim

If you or someone you care about has been injured in a e-scooter accident caused by the negligent actions of another party in the West Palm Beach area, reach out to the personal injury team at GOLDLAW as soon as possible. We take pride in our ability to secure compensation through settlements and jury verdicts on behalf of our clients. Let us help you as soon as possible.

If you need help, “Choose the 2’s,” and call us at (561) 222-2222, or contact us today to schedule your FREE consultation!