Scooter and Moped Accidents

As gas prices continue to rise, millions of Americans are looking to gas-friendly modes of transportation. Among the options available are scooters and mopeds. Since these vehicles use little gas and are relatively inexpensive, commuters are able to manage their budgets and transportation costs while commuting to work and running errands. In 1998 the sales of scooters rose over by over 65%. Sales of popular scooters such as the Vespa® skyrocketed. Unfortunately, more scooters on the road results in more scooter accidents. Even in perpetually rainy Portland, scooter use and scooter accidents are on the rise.


Just like motorcycle and bicycle accidents, scooter and moped vs. car accidents are usually due to the driver of the carís failure to see the scooter. Unfortunately, there is a prejudice against these alternative vehicles and many people including law enforcement and insurance adjusters, assume that the scooter operator is to blame when an accident occurs. If you were injured in a scooter or moped vs. car accident it is best not to give a statement to the insurance company unless and until you consult with a qualified personal injury attorney. Scooters and mopeds are efficient means of transportation, but do not protect the rider in an accident like a car does. Despite common thinking, scooters are not slow by design. For answers to questions about car or other vehicle accidents, please see the Automobile Accident FAQs.


It is common now for Vespa® and other scooters to be capable of speeds of 70 mph without modification. Helmet use can cut down on traumatic brain injuries, but often are insufficient to prevent serious physical injury including spinal cord injuries, fractures and road rash. Given the size and weight differential between a car and a scooter, as well as the speeds involved in such an accident, it is usually the rider who pays the price, sometimes with his or her life.


Scooter riders are subject to all the same motor vehicle laws as drivers of cars or motorcycles. In fact, Oregon laws classify a scooter capable of going over 30 miles per hour or having an engine larger than 50 cubic centimeters as a motorcycle. Anything smaller or slower is either a moped, an electric assisted bicycle, an electric personal mobility device (Segway), or a motor assisted scooter (Rascal). Oregon, like all other states, requires that if a motor vehicle is designed for use on public roads that it needs to be titled and registered. That includes mounting of a license plate or plates and payment of a registration fee. Additionally, the rider must have a driver license or instruction permit. For some vehicles, such as motorcycles, the driver also must have an endorsement on their license.


If you or someone you know was involved in a scooter accident, it is imperative that you immediately contact The Law Office of Josh Lamborn, P.C. to begin protecting your rights.


Call 503-546-0461 or email Josh at jpl@pdxinjury.com to schedule a free consultation regarding your case.


Common scooter and moped accident related injuries: Road rash, Traumatic brain injury, concussion, scarring, broken bones / fractures, separated shoulder, pneumothorax, spinal cord injury, vision and hearing impairment.


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