Injury Prevention Week: 27 June – 1 July
Specialist Personal and Serious Injury lawyers at Clarke Willmott have long been members and supporters of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers, and are getting behind “Injury Prevention Week” from 27th June to 1st July 2022.
Why we support Injury Prevention Week
It is a vital part of the team’s job to try to help people when the worst has happened, when they have sustained life changing injuries or lost a loved one in an accident, and the impact upon individuals affected, their families and friends cannot be overstated – every serious accident avoided should be seen as a success. Supporting Injury Prevention Week is all about getting messages out so we can help each other to prevent needless harm.
This year, the theme of the week is e-scooters, a growing phenomenon on our roads. At the moment, e-scooter usage on roads is legally limited to those in recognised rental schemes, but in the recent Queen’s Speech the Government have indicated the new Transport Bill will seek to make e-scooter use legal. When the matter came before the Transport Select Committee in advance of the Queen’s Speech, opinion was divided amongst MPs, some saying that e-scooters are unsafe and there should be no extension of their use, others said e-scooters on our roads are a reality and so laws should be set out to regulate them safely.
It is beyond doubt that the use of e-scooters is on the rise, as are the injuries and deaths caused by them. In London, e-scooter crashes went up by a massive 2800% in the first half of 2021 compared to the whole of 2018. Last year there were some 900 casualties from e-scooter crashes, some of them involving injuries of the utmost severity, and tragically a number of deaths.
“I have been representing clients after life changing injuries or the loss of a loved one for more than two decades, and the immense personal tragedy of these events never diminishes – whatever we can all do to support each other to prevent these tragedies from occurring should be done. With that in mind as the Government progress the Transport Bill through Parliament I am calling on them to:-
- Consider proper regulation of the types of scooters permitted, their power, and those that can legally drive them;
- Ensure proper resources are put in place for enforcement of the regulations – it is important that dangerous scooters or drivers are actually kept off the road
- Education will be key, perhaps the most important factor. The Bill should set out how drivers will be educated, trained or licensed and how to create a culture of use of e-scooters that is safe for all. It may even be that in certain cases, education is offered as an alternative to prosecution. Clarification should be given to where e-scooters stand in the hierarchy of road users under the new Highway Code.
- The Government must deal with the thorny issue of insurance or other schemes for compensation, the statistics so far demonstrate that accidents will still happen, hopefully in lower numbers if other strategies are working, but no innocent seriously injured victim of an accident involving an e-scooter should be left without the ability to obtain compensation for their losses and so as to maximise their rehabilitation and recovery.”