Two months ago we looked at the economics of the rent-a-scooter-by-the-minute business here. It is a compelling equation with a two month payback that is attracting plenty of capital. Last week Russ and I made a field trip to San Jose and we happened to dine on W. Santa Clara Ave downtown. In an hour we saw more than a dozen scooters whiz by on the sidewalk. It was a bit of a wake-up call for me that was followed by this bit from the SF Chronicle last week
A hospital conference room is an unlikely place to assess a budding transportation revolution, but a team of San Francisco trauma specialists and researchers who gathered there sees its work as essential to ensuring the safety of residents in a city of high-tech guinea pigs. “We don’t know what we don’t know,” Dr. Catherine Juillard, a trauma surgeon at San Francisco General Hospital, said during the meeting in late June.
After a brief absence, shared electric scooters will soon return to San Francisco, and the city and the doctors at the meeting want to track the injuries — from skinned knees to head trauma — that result from the scooters and other transportation options flooding the city.
“I can say that several years ago that I didn’t see these types of injuries happening, and now I do,” said Juillard, who is also a professor researching injury prevention at UCSF. “But we have to do the hard work of looking at the data to determine if there’s truly a trend.”
I hope the doc is looking at pedestrian injury rates and severity as well since cyclists almost always ride in the street while my tiny survey showed the scooterists preferring the sidewalks. Here is a pic of a nicely dressed lady in heels getting on her Lime scooter--what could go wrong?