Earlier this year, some 750 Revel scooters were introduced to the streets of Miami after the company won a shared moped program bid solicited by the Miami Parking Authority. Now, the New York-based vehicle share company, which operates in several other major cities, has been hit with multiple lawsuits and recently announced it was suspended New York City operations until further notice following a string of serious injuries and deaths in scooter accidents.
The New York Times reports the change came after the second fatal scooter accident in as many weeks. One of those incidents involved a 32-year-old man killed when his scooter crashed into a light pole. Less than two weeks earlier, a 26-year-old reporter was killed while riding as a passenger after she was tossed from the scooter when the driver suddenly swerved.
The electric-powered blue scooters, which require a driver’s license to operate but no training to rent, are largely viewed as a fun, fuel efficient alternative to ride share services, taxis and public transportation – particularly attractive in urban areas at a time when the importance of social distancing is stressed. Riders must be at least 21-years-old and are required by company policy to wear a helmet. The company has been operating in New York City since last spring, and is now the subject of at least 12 personal injury lawsuits related to scooter crash injuries and reported scooter malfunctions. One emergency room doctor quoted by the Times said she’d treated as many as eight scooter crash victims in a single shift. Continue reading