Electric scooters have become very popular lately. They are a great form of transportation in urban areas that require very little energy use. They are designed to go between 15 and 20 MPH, which is fast enough to cause serious injuries during a crash. Staying safe while riding one should be a top priority.
1- Safety Equipment Needs to be Worn
If you wear the proper safety equipment, there will be less chance of injuries if you happen to take a spill. A good fitting helmet should be worn to protect your skull. Elbow and knee pads should also be part of the gear for riding an electric scooter. A good pair of heavy shoes or boots could also be included to protect your feet. This means no riding wearing flip flops or barefoot.
2- Be Aware of Obstacles
You need to keep an eye out for potholes, sewer grates, and debris on roadways. Even running over a stick can affect the handling of the scooter, possibly causing a crash. Be aware of pedestrians and people opening car doors. Most places require you to ride on the roads instead of sidewalks, so you need to be visible to faster moving traffic. Wearing a safety vest and flashing lights attached to the scooter will help drivers notice you. Dogs can also present a problem. The high pitch noise of the electric motor attracts them and some will actually chase you.
3- Wet Surfaces are Dangerous
Riding a electric scooter on wet roads become more of a hazard. The tires don’t grip as good and you are more likely to slip. It also takes one longer to stop on wet surfaces. If it is raining out, your visibility will also be less, which should cause you to slow down. If there is snow or ice, the dangers of riding a scooter increases even more. Traction here is almost non-existent, whether you are trying to go or stop. If at all possible, do not ride on wet or frozen surfaces. Tire pressure should be lowered if you are riding on a wet road. This will increase the surface area of the tire on the road which will help some on traction control.
4- No Passengers
Trying to carry a passenger on your electric scooter will affect the balance and braking. Going around corners, climbing a hill, and trying to stop will all create instability during the ride. This increases your chance of having an accident that could send both you and your passenger to a hospital. Scooters are also small and have a weight restriction and going over this limit could potentially cause something to break.
5- Riding After Dark
If you are going to ride at night, make sure you have proper lighting on both the front and back. Wear reflective tape on different parts of your body to help ensure you are noticed by traffic. If you don’t have this equipment, someone driving a car might not see you until the last second, which will be too late to avoid hitting you.
Make sure you read the manual before riding your electric scooter. Check it over before riding to make sure all the bolts are tight and there is no wobble in the wheels. The brakes should also be tested before riding. Finding out that they do not work while riding can be very dangerous. Get in a habit of doing a pre-check every time you go for a ride. This will help ensure that you will have a fun and safe ride. Practice riding in a place away from traffic when learning to ride. The more time that you spend on your electric scooter, the more proficient you will become.