Scooters are affordable and Earth-friendly, but are they dangerous? California’s rising interest in scooters has brought an influx of injuries that are often bad enough to send people to our local emergency rooms.
It all gets even more complicated when you consider that California’s roads are now full of delivery drivers and rideshare drivers for companies like Uber and Lyft. These drivers zip through the streets, mostly free from the strict standards taxi drivers and bus drivers face.
For example, Uber drivers:
- Aren’t subject to additional licensing beyond a California state driver’s license
- Don’t need to undergo any special training
- Aren’t required to pass any additional exams
- Aren’t subject to any annual, random, or scheduled inspections
California’s lawmakers are scrambling to update the law. Learn the latest here.
So what would happen if you were out on your scooter and an Uber crashed into you? Here’s a closer look at some important things you should know.
Other Drivers Don’t Notice Scooter Riders (or Don’t Care!)
Scooter riders are vulnerable because other drivers often fail to see them. Due to a combination of a scooter’s small size and low speed, plus scooter rider inexperience, scooter accidents are happening constantly on California roads.
Some drivers just don’t care about scooter riders or even feel actively hostile toward them. Car owners may feel superior to scooters and assume they have the right of way even when they don’t.
Uber and Lyft Fight California Safety Regulations
Did you know Uber and Lyft have fought our state’s efforts to make their services safer? Time and time again, California legislators and safety experts have tried to hold rideshare companies accountable for safety issues. Uber and Lyft have fought safety measures that are designed to protect the public.
An investigative report found that Uber misled the public about the number of safety problems their service was experiencing. The company ultimately had to pay a $7.3 million fine to continue operating in California.
Uber and Lyft are just as likely to fight a scooter accident claim as any other type of vehicle accident. Rideshare companies have armies of talented lawyers on their side. Shouldn’t you have an experienced lawyer too?
$100K for a No-Contact Scooter Accident Victim
If you find yourself in an Uber accident on your scooter, Sally Morin Personal Injury Lawyers can help you get the compensation you deserve. A scooter accident is likely to result in severe injuries like skin lacerations, broken bones, or even a traumatic brain injury (TBI).
One client won $100,000 after her scooter was cut off by a car at the Highway 80 off-ramp onto 7th Street in San Francisco. The other driver darted out in front of the scooter rider with no warning, and she had to skid onto the ground on her scooter to avoid the crash. Her injuries included a broken arm and shoulder that required major surgery.
To make matters worse, the other driver fled the scene! But Sally Morin Personal Injury Lawyers knew exactly what to do next. We’ve seen plenty of no-contact accident cases, including those that involve drivers who leave the scene of the accident.
In this situation, an Uber driver came to the rescue. We were able to obtain footage from an Uber driver’s dash camera that included the fleeing driver’s car make and model, plus the license plate.
Through a combination of tracking down insurance coverage and negotiating bills to lower amounts, we helped our client pay off medical costs and finally move forward with her recovery.
Uber Insurance Could Cover Your Scooter Accident
You may be wondering how Uber insurance works after an accident. Under California law, Uber must hold $1 million in case someone is injured and Uber’s insurance partner program offers driver coverage with major insurance carriers.
In the event of a covered accident, you may be able to collect on Uber insurance depending on the circumstances involved. Uber insurance coverage depends on three periods.
Period 1: The driver is offline or the app is off.
When the driver is not actively using the app and isn’t working, the driver’s personal insurance coverage applies. You’d need to pursue their auto insurance company, not Uber insurance.
Period 2: The driver is available or waiting for a ride request.
When the driver is working but not actively transporting a passenger, Uber maintains third-party liability coverage if personal auto insurance doesn’t apply. This includes $50,000 in bodily injury per person, $100,000 in bodily injury per accident, and $25,000 in property damage per accident.
Period 3: The driver is en route to pick up riders or is actively driving a passenger.
This is the active period when a driver is en route or driving passengers. Uber insurance is $1 million in third-party liability insurance, uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage, contingent comprehensive and collision coverage, and up to the cash value of the car with a $1,000 deductible.
Lyft insurance works similarly but has slightly different coverage terms. Talk to a California lawyer with experience handling rideshare claims to understand the specifics of each type of accident.
After an Uber vs. Scooter Accident, Here’s How a Lawyer Helps
When you have an experienced California scooter accident lawyer by your side, you can stand up to Uber and the driver who hurt you. Your lawyer can help you:
- Determine who’s involved in your Uber vs. scooter accident
- Contact Uber and negotiate with them
- Handle discussions with Uber insurance
- Review your personal insurance policy for coverage
- Demand a higher level of compensation that you may have been initially offered
- Get your medical bills paid
- Lower your stress, so you can rest and heal
The scooter manufacturer may also hold some responsibility for what happened to you. Scooter malfunctions and safety hazards are at the center of a Washington Post investigation where Lime and Bird, two of the largest scooter rental companies, are currently being sued over alleged scooter safety failures and injuries. Despite a spike in reports of severe scooter injuries, it looks like Lime and Bird have failed to implement meaningful safety measures to protect riders.
It’s also important to know that if you’re in a scooter collision and the other person flees, you don’t have to give up hope. An experienced hit and run lawyer may be able to make a motion using the Delayed Discovery Rule to get the court to grant the extension of time, meaning the clock on the statute of limitations doesn’t start ticking if the other party flees the scene.
So if you’re hit by an Uber driver while riding your scooter, you don’t have to face the situation alone. Sally Morin Personal Injury Lawyers are here to help and we get very positive outcomes for scooter accident victims.
“When a friend of mine was injured in a scooter accident, I knew immediately who to refer her to. A few weeks later, my friend sent me a heartfelt email thanking me for the absolutely stellar referral during a really difficult time in her life. While I never hope to have another friend in accident like that, I have comfort in knowing where to send them should they need impeccable care and representation. Sally and her team fight so incredibly hard for every one of their clients. I couldn’t trust Sally more as an attorney, a source of support, and an absolute expert in the field of personal injury law.” – Meredith S.
Experience a serious Scooter accident?
Check out our Scooter Accident Help Page to learn more about how the process works.
We Handle Your Scooter Accident Claim So You Can Focus on Your Life
After an injury, contact the attorneys at Sally Morin Personal Injury Lawyers. We handle many areas of the law, including scooter accidents. We believe you should be able to focus on recovering while we handle the legal details.
We truly care about the people of California. Contact us today for a free online case evaluation.
If you’re hit by a Lyft or an Uber driver while you’re on your scooter, yes, you do have a case depending on if it was not your fault and you have an injury. So obviously you’ve got to meet some criteria. But making a case against Uber and Lyft is not super simple, but it is something that our office does every day. So if you can get an Uber or Lyft accident specialist, you can easily make a claim against the company. So how it works is the drivers, there’s a whole thing going back and forth right now whether they’re employees or independent contractors. It really doesn’t matter at this point right now, end of 2020. The drivers are considered part of the company itself, so the company is responsible for footing the bill if one of their drivers injures you. So you can make a claim against Uber or Lyft and deal with it like you would with any other insurance claim. The good thing about the Uber and Lyft claims is that you’re not going to run up against an issue with them not having enough insurance, whereas if a normal person hits you, they might carry the minimum required in California, which is still only $15,000. It’s been that same limit since the early ’80s and it’s a shame, but that’s where we’re at. So if you have an Uber or Lyft versus scooter accident claim, feel free to call us, we handle them all the time and we’re here for you.