Especially in recent years, electric scooters, which are increasingly used in our country as well as all over the world, bring some risks. Orthopedics and Traumatology Specialist Assoc. Dr. Hakan Turan Çift pointed out that nearly 50 percent of electric scooter accidents result in orthopedic injuries.
Electric scooters (e-scooters) have become an important means of transportation for city dwellers since their introduction in 2017. Moreover, in densely populated cities, it also contributes to reducing air pollution by creating an alternative to public transportation, especially for short distances, as they are electrified.
In addition to all these, Yeditepe University Hospitals Orthopedics and Traumatology Specialist Assoc. Dr. Hakan Turan Çift pointed out orthopedic problems that may arise.
Pointing out that there is an increase in injury rates, especially with the increase in usage rate in big cities, Assoc. Dr. Hakan Turan Çift, “Electric scooter accidents; Significant increases were observed in summer months and on weekends, especially between 14:00 and 22:00. These injuries are more common in men between the ages of 18-44 and generally. In addition, the fact that there is no minimum age limit determined by law for use also poses a risk in terms of accident.
THE USE OF PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT IS MANDATORY!
Many drivers do not use protective equipment because the age limits, traffic training requirements and mandatory protective equipment against the risk of injury of electric scooter drivers are not fully determined legally. Assoc. Dr. Hakan Turan Çift continued his words by warning that accidents that may result in a simple orthopedic injury may cause high-risk orthopedic injuries:
“We see that injuries related to an e-scooter accident often occur in the upper extremities such as the shoulders, elbows and hands, in the anterior cruciate ligaments of the knee joint, in the head area or in the face area. However, hip fractures and contusions in the lower extremities are also seen. The most commonly broken bone is the Radius bone in the wrist, which can be treated with plaster. Around 80-90% of the injured are sent home from the emergency room, while 10-20% are hospitalized in the service or intensive care unit for surgery. Fractures of the lower extremity such as the leg have a 2 times higher rate of hospitalization than fractures of the upper extremity such as the arm and hand.”
STRICT RULES NEEDED
Reminding that some legal regulations have been introduced in some countries to make the use of electric scooters safer, Assoc. Hakan Turan Çift said, “As the on-demand mobility market continues to mature, regulators, city planners and commercial institutions must focus on maximizing the safety of both drivers and pedestrians. The use of protective equipment must be encouraged, and even the use of some equipment (helmet, wrist, elbow and knee protectors, etc.) must be mandatory. There should be some legal sanctions for the drivers' own safety and environmental safety. It should not be used after drinking alcohol, the number of passengers (only 1 person), the suitability of the ground used (wet or uneven floors are not suitable for use), the general rules that must be followed in traffic and the age range, speed limit, and the use of protective equipment are also determined by the legislators as soon as possible. It is important to identify.”