Can You Sue Bird Scooter?
When renting a Bird scooter, you must sign a liability waiver stating you are assuming all responsibility for injuries. That does not mean you cannot sue Bird scooter if certain conditions apply, such as poor maintenance of the scooter or a malfunction that contributes to the accident.
When Bird scooters, also known as dockless scooters, first appeared on the streets of Los Angeles and other cities, they seemed like a reasonable, inexpensive way to get around town. Then the reports of injuries began accumulating throughout Southern California and many of them were not due to rider error. Instead, it was apparent some of these scooters were defective.
A Los Angeles E-scooter lawyer at Ellis Injury Law protects your rights and helps you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries.
Class action lawsuit
In 2018, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Bird and other electric scooter ridesharing companies. The lawsuit claims that these companies “dumped” their products on public streets without considering the dangerous public nuisance constituted by these vehicles. It alleges safety instructions were insufficient, and that the scooters are “mechanically deficient.” The companies’ breached their warranties, and the scooters are unsuitable for repeat use by the public. The lawsuit alleges that unsuitability rests on the scooters’ improper design for urban use and the frequency with which they are out of control.
Lime, another e-scooter company named in the lawsuit, had to recall 2,000 vehicles from Los Angeles, San Diego, and Lake Tahoe because of potentially explosive batteries.
Bird Scooter injuries
Those riding scooters have no more protection than cyclists or pedestrians. However, bicyclists and pedestrians do not often veer out of control.
Bird scooters are not designed to go very fast, but under some circumstances, they can speed up and cause injuries. While maximum speed is advertised as 15 miles per hour, that does not take riding on hills into account –and the possibility of broken brakes.
Riders frequently break bones when a scooter starts speeding, and due to malfunction, is not stoppable. The person either falls off the scooter or must jump off to avoid hitting a car, wall, or other objects. Such falls can also result in head or spinal cord injuries.
Facial lacerations and broken noses and teeth are other common scooter injuries. Emergency room doctors nationwide report serious accidents occurring not long after these rideshare services become available.
Deaths have occurred when a scooter rider collides with a motor vehicle.
What to do if injured on a Bird Scooter
If injured, call 911. Paramedics will take you to a hospital, if necessary. You should also report the accident to the police if you were injured or if you hit another person or vehicle. Take photos or videos of the accident scene, the scooter, and your injuries. Do not leave the scene if another party is involved, as leaving the scene of an accident is against the law.
Tell the responding police officer exactly what happened. If there were any eyewitnesses, get their contact information. Seek medical attention right away, even if you do not think you were badly hurt. Many injuries do not appear right away, but if you fail to obtain a medical examination, it will harm or preclude your claim.
The same advice holds true for a pedestrian struck by someone on a Bird Scooter.
Since Bird only permits licensed drivers to operate a scooter, it is the user’s insurance that should cover the injured pedestrian’s medical expenses and any lost wages. That is not the case if the accident was caused by a mechanical defect, for which Bird should prove liable. Of course, many pedestrian and scooter accidents are hit-and-runs.
Pedestrian accidents may occur not only if hit by a scooter, but by tripping over one. Because Bird scooters are left anywhere, that means a tripping hazard if the last user did not employ the kickstand and the scooter is on a walkway.
Contact a Los Angeles E-Scooter accident lawyer
If you or someone you know was injured in an E-scooter accident because of a scooter defect or another party’s negligence, you need the services of the Los Angeles E-scooter accident lawyers at Ellis Injury Law. Arrange a free consultation by filling out our online form or calling or texting 24/7.
After evaluating your claim, we will advise you whether there are grounds for a lawsuit. Because we work on a contingency basis, there is never a fee unless you receive compensation.