I’ve by no means been shy about my support for electric scooters and e-bikes as an important piece of the alternative transportation puzzle. However because the variety of high-profile accidents grows, it’s time that we took a critical have a look at the significance of rider security.
The most recent incident to make headlines is Rihanna’s electrical scooter crash.
The recording artist was seen with a black eye and bruised face this weekend following an accident on an electrical scooter.
It isn’t recognized what sort of electrical scooter Rihanna was driving or if she was sporting a helmet..
Excessive-profile instances of celebrities getting injured on electrical scooters and e-bikes make for flashy information, that means these are the instances we have a tendency to listen to about. However countless other people are similarly and needlessly injured, and they aren’t reported.
Whereas many riders are fortunate to stroll away with scraped knees and bruised egos, one of many main causes of great damage is head trauma that would have been prevented by sporting a helmet.
Revel’s shared electrical scooter program recently restarted in New York City after three deaths in two months. Once more, we hear about high-profile instances such because the death of local NYC news reporter Nina Kapur, who was killed whereas driving with out sporting a helmet as a passenger on a Revel scooter. However these accidents happen far too usually, not often making the information with out a well-known title to attract consideration.
And I’m not singling out anyone service or scooter firm. Revel, for its half, has launched stringent new safety regulations together with requiring “helmet selfies” that solely enable a scooter to be unlocked if the rider is sporting a helmet. Every scooter additionally consists of two helmets within the cargo field, geared up with tearaway hygienic liners.
Shared electrical scooter firms like Lime and Bird provide free helmets to riders, although riders should request a helmet upfront.
Such security measures by firms are useful, however the one method we are able to actually make all these two-wheeled electrical automobiles safer is that if we as riders make security a precedence.
Meaning sporting a helmet. Meaning driving in correct bike lanes as a substitute of weaving round pedestrians. Meaning familiarizing ourselves with electrical scooters or e-bikes earlier than taking them out on a busy highway for the primary journey.
After all there are inherent dangers with electrical bicycles and e-scooters, similar to with any type of transportation. An electrical scooter is statistically extra harmful than a automotive, which is statistically extra harmful than a bus, which is statistically extra harmful than a practice, and many others.
However at a time when an increasing number of riders are turning to e-bikes in comparison with shared automobiles, buses, and trains as a consequence of COVID-19 issues, it’s extra essential than ever that riders take measures to mitigate the dangers of micromobility. Put on a helmet. Journey inside your limits. Know your native site visitors legal guidelines. Yield to automobiles. Positive, possibly you had the correct of method. That’s nice, and your tombstone will probably be inscribed with, “Right here lies expensive reader; he had the correct of method.”
However maybe most significantly of all, take the time to grasp the automobile you’re utilizing. Whereas practically everybody is aware of how you can journey a motorcycle, an electrical scooter may be deceiving. It follows the identical rules as a bicycle or e-bike, however requires particular consideration as a consequence of its smaller wheels and inherently decrease stability. When you’re new at driving scooters, contemplating borrowing a good friend’s and practising in a car parking zone first. Do donuts, learn the way the steering responds, observe retaining your weight additional again on the scooter and braking slowly so that you don’t fly over the handlebars. And naturally remember that your smaller wheels merely can NOT deal with the identical sorts of obstacles as bicycle wheels. When doubtful, cease and go round.
Observe doesn’t make good, however it makes you much more skilled and higher in a position to deal with the surprises that inevitably come up in the true world.
To reiterate, I strongly assist the function of electrical scooters and different types of micromobility. They assist cut back CO2 emissions, clear highway congestion, and get riders outdoors having fun with the recent air. Heck, I don’t even drive a automotive — I get in all places I must go in my metropolis on various forms of electric two-wheelers (or four-wheelers, should you rely electrical skateboards, too).
However as a lot as I advocate for the elevated used of micromobility automobiles, I’m not seeing the world via rose-colored driving goggles, both. We should always all settle for that all these automobiles require extra security issues and driving consideration as a way to function safely. That begins with sporting a helmet and familiarizing ourselves with how you can safely and confidently function such automobiles. Nevertheless it continues from there. Each journey is an opportunity to observe these abilities and hone our consciousness.
Every certainly one of us is liable for our personal security. When you take pleasure in driving, then do it safely, correctly, and responsibly to ensure you can maintain doing it for a few years to come back. I’ll be completely happy to affix you for a journey!
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