The scooter programs in cities like Chicago ostensibly provide a convenient alternative to walking or driving in urban areas, but they come with certain risks for both riders and nearby pedestrians. Part of the risk comes from the temptation to operate a scooter while under the influence of alcohol. After a long day of drinking in the city, hopping on a readily available e-scooter may seem like a great idea to a person whose judgment is lacking. Unfortunately, this decision all too often comes with serious consequences.
E-Scooter Rider Intoxication Statistics
A recent study of people treated for e-scooter injuries sought to understand some common factors in these injury cases. While the lack of a helmet was by far the most common factor among the injured, alcohol and drug use were also prominent. Of the patients tested for these substances, 48 percent had a blood alcohol concentration above 0.08, and 52 percent tested positive for THC or another controlled substance.
E-Scooter Intoxication Laws in Illinois
In Illinois, there is some ambiguity in the law regarding the treatment of scooter riders operating under the influence. Any driver of a motor vehicle can be charged with a DUI if their BAC is above 0.08 or they are otherwise impaired. However, while some mopeds and motorized scooters are considered motor vehicles, low-speed electric and gas bicycles are not, and low-speed electric scooters are not specifically mentioned at all in the legal statutes.
However, even if there are no grounds for filing criminal DUI charges against a drunk e-scooter operator in Illinois, they can still be held liable in a civil case for damages caused by their negligence. If you are injured in a collision with a drunk scooter operator, you should work with an attorney to understand your options for recovering compensation. Your attorney can help you gather evidence of the operator’s negligence, including any available camera footage of the collision and testimony from eyewitnesses. If the scooter operator was charged with an offense like disorderly conduct or taken into protective custody because of their impairment, testimony from the police may also help to support your personal injury claim.
Contact a Chicago E-Scooter Injury Lawyer
At Livas Law Group, we are well aware of the challenges associated with the introduction of e-scooters to the Chicago area. If you are injured in an e-scooter accident, we can help you navigate the uncertainty and complications of your case as you seek fair compensation for your damages. For a free consultation with a Chicago scooter injury attorney, contact our office today by calling 312-804-6102.