Can a Pedestrian Struck by a Bird or Lime E-Scooter File a Lawsuit?
Given the relative novelty of electric scooters in California, there are few regulations or laws in place regarding accidents and injuries. Most of the recent litigation surrounding Bird and Lime E-scooters are based on inadequate safety instructions, malfunctioning vehicles, and defective components, but what about pedestrian knock-downs. If you are a pedestrian struck by an E-scooter rider, can you file a lawsuit, and if so, which parties would be held responsible?
The answer is yes, victims have the right to file a personal injury lawsuit after being hit by a Bird or Lime electric scooter. California law forbids riding E-scooters on crosswalks and sidewalks for good reason. Filled with pedestrians, sidewalks are one of the most congested and dangerous places for this mode of motorized transportation.
It’s estimated that some 23,000 electric scooters are in Los Angeles alone — and serious accidents are becoming alarmingly common, particularly among pedestrians.
If you were injured as a pedestrian, it’s essential to contact an experienced e-scooter accident lawyer as soon as possible. Here at Ellis Injury Law, we will listen to your story, gather the evidence needed to substantiate a claim, and formulate the best legal strategy for your particular case. Our legal team has the resources and skill to aggressively pursue compensation from liable parties, and have the case results to prove it.
Who is liable in a pedestrian and E-scooter accident?
In lawsuits arising from E-scooter pedestrian knock-downs, plaintiffs must demonstrate liability. Lime and Bird could be potential defendants if it can be shown that the accident took place because of a malfunctioning or defective scooter. For example, a rider attempts to brake as he docks the device, but they fail, causing him to lose control and crash into a pedestrian. In this situation, the electric scooter company many be held accountable under theories of strict product liability.
In some cases, the city or municipality where the E-scooter accident took place may be held partially responsible if a poorly maintained roadway or unmarked hazard contributed to or caused the accident.
Lime and Bird E-scooter riders may think that they are fully covered by the company’s liability insurance in the event of a crash, but this is far from the case. If the rider’s own negligent or reckless behavior causes them to strike a pedestrian and cause injury, they – not the company – may be on the hook for damages.
No matter which party is culpable, collecting compensation for E-scooter injuries is complicated and requires a thorough understanding of both local ordinances and the law as it applies to your case.
Steps to take after being struck by an electric scooter
Personal injury actions are time-sensitive, so if you’ve been hurt by a Lime or Bird E-scooter rider, don’t hesitate to consult with an attorney. Those who wait too long can lose valuable evidence as well as the opportunity to sue for financial recovery.
Your actions in the immediate moments following an E-scooter accident can make a big difference when it comes to seeking justice. Follow these tips to protect your interests:
- Get seen by a medical professional right away; all injuries need to be documented
- Report the accident to authorities
- Gather important evidence from the scene, including photos, video and contact information of eyewitnesses
- Keep track of medical expenses
- Contact a qualified lawyer to discuss your situation
Recoverable damages for plaintiffs
A successful E-scooter accident lawsuit can recoup monetary reimbursement for a variety of economic and non-economic damages suffered by pedestrians, including:
- Medical bills including future surgery, therapy, hospitalization, and rehabilitation
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Pain and mental suffering
- Permanent disability
Protect your rights to financial recovery with Ellis Injury Law
If you were seriously harmed by a Lime or Bird electric scooter rider in Southern California, we invite you to schedule a free consultation at Ellis Injury Law. Our dedicated attorneys are here to protect your rights and help you win the maximum compensation on your behalf. We take all cases on a contingent-fee arrangement, so you only pay if we settle or win your case.