New report presents clearer picture on e-scooter safety issues

Last May, I wrote an article discussing the safety of e-scooters, as Seattle was beginning to discuss a scooter-share program modeled after its existing bike-share program, and as other cities agressively rolled out scooter share. My conclusion was that there simply was not enough data to draw a definitive answer on e-scooter safety, though the early results presented reasons to be concerned. Now, as Seattle is well on its way to rolling out scooter-share later this spring, a new report on scooter injuries nationwide in 2018 brings us a bigger data set — and fresh reasons to be concerned.

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How safe are e-scooters?

Last week, Council members Mosqueda and O’Brien staged a rally for to promote introducing electric scooters to Seattle. They even invited leading scooter-share companies Bird and Lime to sit at the committee table in Council Chambers and give a nearly uninterrupted sales pitch — with no hard questions following. Mayor Durkan has been much more pessimistic on the idea, frequently citing the number of mayors who have told her to resist e-scooters as long as possible because of the injury rate. Before Seattle gets into the e-scooter game, shouldn’t we know something about how safe they are? Let’s dive in …

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