Examining Scooter Accidents and Injury Law
Both residents and visitors to our area have a range of transportation options. Scooters are an increasingly popular choice, given their gas mileage and ease of operation. Contrary to popular assumptions, scooters are not a foolproof way to avoid the safety concerns of a larger motorcycle. As a scooter accident attorney for Panama City and the surrounding regions, Attorney Pittman knows that scooter accidents are a very real danger. He is prepared to help both riders and bystanders injured in accidents caused by someone else's negligence, assisting them in obtaining a verdict or settlement and recovering the compensation they are due.
PCB Moves Closer to Insurance Requirements for Scooter Rental Companies
In the spring, we wrote about the possibility of new regulations impacting the scooter rental business in Panama City Beach. As the News Herald reports, this past Thursday the Panama City Beach City Council gave unanimous approval to a first reading of the insurance coverage proposal. The ordinance will need to be approved on a second reading, planned for July, to become law.
Under the proposed ordinance, scooter rental businesses would be required to carry minimum liability insurance coverage in amounts that match Florida's requirements for automobiles -- $10,000 per person for each occurrence, $20,000 for all people in a crash, and $10,000 for property damage. Rental business owners say insurance is cost-prohibitive and difficult to obtain.
Frequency and Characteristics of Scooter Crashes
A 2011 article on moped and scooter crashes in the Journal of Trauma notes that the vehicles were in the midst of a resurgence, with a 60% increase in sales in the years prior to the study, possibly due to gas prices and the economic downturn. Using Florida as a case study, they found a total of 5,660 moped crashes (the report uses "moped" and "scooter" interchangeably) between 2002 and 2008, with 18% resulting in severe injury or death. Speed and an overnight timeframe both increased crash severity. Alcohol or drug use doubled the risk that a crash would involve a severe or fatal injury. They also found that nearly half of those involved in scooter accidents did not own the vehicle.
The 2011 study also found that more than 90% of moped and scooter drivers lacked insurance coverage. The authors suggest this is concerning and may result in a significant cost burden for states, and they recommend that states with loose insurance coverage requirements reexamine those rules. Also weighing in favor of insurance coverage, studies done abroad found that there was a 20 times higher injury risk associated with moped travel than car travel.
The Importance of Insurance and the Ability to Collect
Our firm is dedicated to getting verdicts and/or settlements in favor of the wrongfully injured and to making sure that they are able to collect the compensation they are due. If a person is severely injured, a large judgment is often very much appropriate, but an individual or even a small company may not have the funds to pay the plaintiff the amounts due. Insurance helps ensure that victims are able to get the money they desperately need to cover medical bills, lost wages, and the other costs of injury. Our Panama City personal injury attorney will help you in all stages of your case, including settlement negotiations, trial (if necessary), and collection. Call to learn more.