Electric Scooters in Tampa: Florida Laws & Safety Tips

No matter if it’s HOPR, BIRD, LIME, or SPIN, if you’ve been in and around the city of Tampa, you’ve likely seen people riding around on electric scooters 

While fun and a great way to get around the city, if people aren’t careful, they can be extremely dangerous not only for the person on the scooter but pedestrians and motorists alike. 

As a personal injury lawyer in Tampa, we take great pride in providing our community with the information they need to enjoy things like electric scooters safely. 

In this blog post we’ll cover:

  • Electric scooter laws in Florida
  • Electric scooter safety tips
  • Legal risks
  • What to do if you’re injured while riding an electric scooter

Electric Scooter Laws in Florida

In 2019, Governor Ron DeSantis legalized electric scooters in Florida. To use these electric scooters there are a few associated guidelines you should know:

– Riders must be 16 years old. 

– A driver’s license isn’t necessary. 

– Scooters can be used in bike lanes and must adhere to road rules for bikes.

If you’d like to learn more about Tampa’s shared micromobility program, check out tampa.gov’s article, here

Electric Scooter Safety Tips

Before you rent an electric scooter, we encourage you to read through these safety tips so you’re prepared before you hit the road. 

These safety tips are for riders and motorists:

  • Never ride with more than one passenger. 
  • Wear a helmet.
  • Look at the battery level, and test the brakes and mechanics prior to riding. 
  • Keep your eyes on the road to avoid any obstacles such as uneven pavement or potholes. Never use your phone while riding an electric scooter.
  • Avoid using an electric scooter during inclement weather. Wet roads can lead to unwanted accidents. 
  • Keep the Florida laws for electric scooters (listed above) in mind while riding.
  • Never use an electric scooter when under the influence. 
  • Always check your surroundings for motorists and pedestrians.  
  • Slow down, check your surroundings, and signal before making a turn. If the electric scooter doesn’t have a turn signal, use your arm or leg to signal which way you’re planning to turn. 
  • Though electric scooter riders should adhere to road laws, motorists should pay close attention to their blind spots, turn slowly and be extra cautious at night.

Legal risks to know before riding

Before hopping on an electric scooter, we want you to know the associated legal risks. 

For instance, if you weave in and out of traffic lanes and cause an accident with a motorist or pedestrian, you’ll likely be at fault for any injuries or property damage sustained by those involved in the incident. 

Not to mention, if you leave your scooter in a precarious position and cause an accident for bicyclists or even someone who’s walking/running, you could also be held liable. 

More times than not, electric scooter companies don’t carry liability insurance and most car insurance policies don’t ensure vehicles with less than four wheels. 

This means if you cause an accident while on a scooter, you’ll likely have to pay the damages in full without the help of your insurance company. 

What should you do if you’re injured while riding an electric scooter?

If you’re injured while riding an electric scooter in Tampa, we encourage you to follow these steps to ensure your safety and report the incident:

  1. If injuries are sustained call 911 immediately. 
  2. Document the incident with photos and videos. 
  3. Jot down any notes about the accident from your perspective. 
  4. Contact a personal injury lawyer immediately. 
  5. Do not talk about your case with anyone. 

If you’re ready to file a personal injury claim, contact us today and set up your free case evaluation.