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article imageCDC to study electric scooter accidents for the first time

By Tim Sandle     Mar 9, 2019 in Technology
Austin - Electric scooters are becoming increasingly popular, especially with millennials. This popularity runs in tandem with an increase in scooter-related accidents. The U.S. CDC is to study accident patterns for the first time.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has begun analyzing data pertaining to the rise of injuries connected to shareable electric scooters. The new study was initiated on instruction from the Public Health and Transportation department in Austin, Texas. This was in light on a step change in injuries related to scooters, especially those offered by ride-sharing companies.
The electric scooter market in becoming big in the U.S. and Canada (although not in countries like the U.K. or cities such as Madrid, where restrictions remain in place). This market has been driven bu mobility-as-a-service companies offering scooters for higher, and this has led to a range of different startups entering the scooter technology or hiring service space. For example, the e-scooter startup Bird recently secured $300 million for its expansion plans, with assistance from financial giant Fidelity, which is part of Bird's on-going battle for "micromobility" supremacy with Lime.
There are several safety issues associated with e-scooters and many local authorities are becoming concerned about the growing level of accidents. While helmets are recommended for riding electric scooters, these are not compulsory everywhere (one area where the wearing of helmets is mandated is in California). Even the wearing of helmets does not fully protect the scooter rider from incidents or accidents.
Looking at just two emergency rooms in southern California, medical researchers found 249 patients presented to the emergency department with injuries associated with electric scooter use during a 1-year period. See: "Injuries Associated With Standing Electric Scooter Use", published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
With the CDC's new focus on scooter accidents, The Verge reports that Austin Public Health has begun collaborating with CDC researchers to analyze severe injuries that occurred in the city between September to November 2018. The hope is to develop a set of recommendations that can be used to reduce the number of injuries befalling scooter riders or those that the riders come into contact with.
More about electric scooter, Scooter, Accidents, Injury, Mobility
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