A collision with an electric scooter, even at only 25 kilometres per hour, against a pedestrian or a vehicle can cause serious injuries.
This is the main conclusion of the report, ‘Crash-tests of electric scooters, associated risks and recommendations for safe use’, carried out by Fundación MAPFRE in collaboration with CESVIMAP and which includes the results of two crash tests, based on previous simulations by computer.
“The objective is to raise awareness of the possible risks of VMP (Personal Mobility Vehicles) abuse and to provide our support to manufacturers to improve the design of these vehicles and make them safer,” explained José María Cancer, director of CESVIMAP.
In the first test, a mannequin on a scooter hits a car laterally, at a speed of 25 kilometres per hour. The analysis of the collision establishes that the most affected area is the head of the scooter rider, but the cervical area is also exposed to a high risk, which can suffer whiplash in the moment after the collision, after hitting the head against the ground. “The parts of the head not protected by the helmet, such as the face, are the ones that suffer the most damage in this accident”, highlights Jorge Ortega, coordinator of the report.
In the second test, the scooter dummy runs over a pedestrian child who suffers the most serious personal injuries: serious injuries to the knee, thorax, and head, which usually impact first, violently against the steering column of the scooter, and then against the ground.
It also affects the shoulders, where the weight of the driver and the scooter itself falls on when it hits the asphalt. For the driver, the risk of injury is reduced by ‘landing’ on the body of the hit pedestrian.
“The data extracted from these tests has provided very valuable information on direct and indirect damages” , they affirm from Fundación MAPFRE, which has carried out these crash tests with an innovative towing device for VMPs, bicycles and motorcycles (with or without dummies).
The report also highlights the growing use of personal mobility vehicles in recent years and collects unofficial accident data obtained by the media: in 2020 there were more than 100 traffic accidents with victims with scooters (24 more than in 2019), with 109 people slightly and seriously injured (26 more than in 2019) and 6 deaths (1 more than the previous year). Most of the victims were between 16 and 35 years old.
Almost all claims occur in towns or cities (98%) and specifically, in vehicle lanes (66%). And they happen, mainly, as a result of collisions (60%), accidents (20%) and falls (19%). Cars (66%), pedestrians (11%), vans (8%), trucks and buses (7%) and bicycles (6%) are involved in these accidents, which are suffered mainly by people between 16 and 35 years old.
The factors that most influence a fatal accident are driving without a helmet (40%), recklessness committed by other vehicles (20%), and driving on interurban roads (20%).
“Currently, a third of those affected by this type of accident suffer head injuries that require admission to Intensive Medicine Units,” explained Fundación MAPFRE.
On a scooter, safely
The MAPFRE Foundation recommends taking these measures into account to circulate safely on scooters and other personal mobility vehicles (VMP):
– Always use a helmet and reflective vest or high visibility clothing.
– Circulate on bike lanes and zones 30.
– Respect traffic signs at all times.
– Do not invade the sidewalks and get off the scooter when crossing a pedestrian crossing.
– Do not use your foot as a brake to avoid injuries and do not use devices to listen to music.
– Maintain the correct pressure of the tires and carry out proper maintenance of the scooter.
The post Scooters: Serious Injuries at 25km / h
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