Blade and Electric Scooter Accidents Involving Rideshare Apps: A Rising Safety Concern in Colorado

The use of shared mobility devices like electric scooters and bikes has skyrocketed in recent years, especially in urban areas. Major rideshare companies like Lime, Bird, Lyft, and Uber have flooded cities with these vehicles available for short-term rental through smartphone apps. While shared mobility provides convenient and affordable transportation, it also introduces new safety hazards and liability concerns. This is especially true in Colorado, where injuries and fatalities involving rideshare scooters and bikes are on the rise.

The Rise of Shared Mobility in Colorado

Colorado has fully embraced the shared mobility model, offering a variety of scooters, e-bikes, and traditional bikes to residents. The fleet size has more than doubled over the past three years. Denver and Aurora lead the pack, but even smaller cities like Colorado Springs, Boulder, and Fort Collins have rideshare programs.

Rideshare scooters and bikes provide residents and visitors a quick, inexpensive way to move around congested downtowns. The vehicles can be rented on-demand through apps like Lyft, and the B-cycle scheme. Trips typically cost $1 to unlock the vehicle plus 15 to 39 cents per minute of use. Rideshare companies manage the fleet, handle maintenance, and use GPS to track vehicles.

Safety Concerns and Regulations

While shared mobility fills an important transportation need, it has also led to safety issues. Critics argue that rideshare companies have prioritized growth over responsible management. Lax oversight has resulted in inexperienced riders using poorly maintained vehicles on unsafe roads and sidewalks.

Common safety concerns associated with rideshare vehicles include:

  • Inexperienced Riders – Many riders lack experience operating electric scooters and bikes, leading to falls, collisions, and improper riding.
  • No Helmet Requirements – Colorado does not require riders of electric scooters or bikes to wear a helmet. Head injuries are common in crashes.
  • Careless Riding – Riders frequently violate traffic laws by riding on sidewalks, against traffic, and under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • Defective Equipment – Mechanical and maintenance issues such as faulty brakes, tires, and batteries can cause crashes.
  • Cluttered Sidewalks – Rideshare vehicles clutter sidewalks when improperly parked, blocking pedestrian right-of-way.

To address these concerns, Colorado passed its first rideshare regulations in 2019. The rules require:

  • A 15 mph speed limit on rideshare scooters
  • Minimum age requirements of 18+ to rent
  • Nighttime lights and reflectors
  • Companies to educate riders and post safety information on devices
  • Geofencing technology to prohibit riding in certain high-risk areas

Some cities like Denver have gone further by capping fleet sizes and restricting riding and parking locations. However, lax enforcement and limited oversight remain issues.

Increasing Injuries and Fatalities

As a result of continued safety problems, injuries and fatalities associated with rideshare vehicles have climbed rapidly in Colorado:

  • Between January 21 and October 22, Denver emergency rooms saw 3.6 e-scooter related injuries each day.
  • Electric scooters were involved in 64 car crashes in 2023.
  • Since 2018, there have been at least eight fatalities due to e-scooter accidents

Electric bikes and scooters clearly enable mobility in Colorado, but they also enable severe injuries without proper oversight. More action is needed to improve education, enforce safe riding, and hold companies accountable.

Common Injuries Sustained in E-Scooter Accidents

E-scooter accidents can result in a wide range of traumatic injuries, especially when riders are not wearing helmets and proper safety gear. According to studies by the CDC and medical researchers, some of the most common injuries from e-scooter crashes include:

  • Head Injuries – Traumatic brain injuries, fractures, cuts, bruises, and concussions from impacting pavement or objects. These are especially dangerous without a helmet.
  • Broken Bones – Fractures and dislocations of wrists, arms, shoulders, legs, and ankles from riders being thrown off scooters.
  • Facial Injuries – Fractured eye sockets, jaws, noses, and knocked out teeth from hitting the ground face first.
  • Spinal Cord Injuries – Damage to neck, back, and spinal cord from sudden impact with hard surfaces leading to paralysis.
  • Road Rash – Severe skin abrasions from skidding along pavement. Can lead to scarring and infections.
  • Internal Organ Damage – Lung contusions, ruptured spleens, liver laceration from blunt force trauma.

These injuries frequently require extensive medical treatment, including surgery, hospitalization, rehabilitation, and ongoing care. Riders can be left with permanent disabilities affecting their quality of life and ability to work. Prompt legal action is important to cover the costs of injury-related damages.

Liability Issues in Rideshare Accidents

When a rideshare scooter or bike incident results in injury or death, determining liability can be complicated. Legal responsibility may rest with:

  • The Rider – If reckless, intoxicated, underage, or violating laws
  • The Company – If equipment is defective, poorly maintained, or improperly deployed
  • The City – If infrastructure is hazardous or regulations lacking

Most rideshare apps try to shift all liability to the rider through legal waivers. However, injured victims may still have grounds for a personal injury lawsuit if negligence or recklessness can be proven. An experienced personal injury attorney can help analyze fault and build a strong case.

Factors that suggest liability may include:

  • Defective Parts or Maintenance – Brakes, tires, batteries, etc.
  • Missing Safety Features – Lights, reflectors, mirrors
  • Improper Geofencing – Allowing riding where prohibited
  • Lack of Rider Education – Failing to provide training and safety information

Your Rights After a Rideshare Accident in Colorado

If you or a loved one has been injured in an electric scooter or bike accident involving Uber, Lyft, Bird, Lime or other rideshare app in Colorado, you have legal rights. An attorney can help recover damages for injuries, lost wages, and other costs. Compensation may be pursued through negotiations or in court if needed.

It is important to document evidence, get medical treatment, and speak with qualified legal counsel as soon as possible after an incident. Never sign anything provided by a rideshare company without advice.

Victims should strongly consider taking these steps:

  • Report the Accident – File a report with the rideshare company and alert local authorities
  • Seek Medical Care – Get examined and follow treatment plans to document injuries
  • Photograph Evidence – Take photos of injuries, vehicle damage, and accident scene
  • Consult an Attorney – Discuss legal options for compensation with an experienced lawyer

Call now for a free consultation on (888) 477-0597 if you have been hurt in an accident. We have offices in 32 locations across 19 states, including Colorado, South Carolina, and Iowa. Once you have contacted us, an attorney will review your case details and advise on all available options. Don’t delay, as strict time limits apply for claims and lawsuits.