The e-scooter, the latest in urban commuting, is diminutive but potentially powerful. According to proponents, it could well be the big solution for what is a decades old problem – covering the so-called "last mile" – that distance in every city, including Atlanta, that is too far to walk to and too near to drive.
Others, however, caution about the personal safety threat the devices represent. Riders who use the vehicles can tool through downtown areas at speeds of up to 15 mph. While some cities ban riders from city sidewalks, such is not the case in Atlanta. Meanwhile, increasing reports of mild to serious and even deadly accidents are sparking more negative reactions.
What you need to know
Right now, in Atlanta, a growing list of providers offers various forms of ride-share options. They run the gamut from e-scooters, to pedal bikes, on up to mopeds. The mopeds have two helmets included. But state law only requires that those 16 and younger wear bicycle helmets. The Atlanta city council is working on an ordinance proposal to bring greater controls to the new transport modes, but right now the environment is one that some describe as a wild west scooterville.
The purpose of this post is not to question the merits of these forms of travel or dissuade anyone from using them. Rather, the intent is to observe that in the absence of specific regulations, a greater burden rests on everyone to be more mindful and observant to avoid potential accidents.
At the same time, should negligence on anyone's part cause injuries, victims should be prepared to consult with an attorney to understand their options regarding their rights in pursuing optimal recovery for pain and suffering.