by admin on September 21, 2016 in News
Contributed By Katelyn Eaves
Scooters and mopeds are common place within Northwest Arkansas Communities. This convenient method of transportation is a popular option among many people, but what does this mean for other drivers on the road? What are the particular risks of accidents involving mopeds or scooters?
The rise of scooter popularity has led to an increase in motor vehicle accidents involving scooters. From 2012 to 2014, there were 116 accidents in Fayetteville, AR involving scooters; 51 of the accidents were determined to be the scooter driver’s fault. Of these 116 accidents, 91 of the moped drivers were uninsured. Though scooters do not inflict a lot of damage to full-size vehicles, the real risks are the injuries scooter drivers’ sustain during a collision.
Operators of mopeds and scooters are at a higher risk of injury and death if involved in a collision for several reasons. One of the biggest contributing risk factors to death or injury is a driver’s lack of protective headgear. This risk is amplified in Arkansas because the law does not require a license to operate a moped, scooter, or motorized bicycle under 50ccs. In fact, people as young as 14 can drive one of these small engine vehicles. Even more unsettling is that drivers of mopeds, scooters, and motorized bicycles are not required by law to wear a helmet after the age of 21.
Accidents that involve scooters are particularly nerve-wracking since most moped drivers do not carry insurance. Any motorized moped or scooter under 50 ccs is not required to have an insurance policy per Arkansas law. Fayetteville, Arkansas decided to remedy this by requiring all scooters operated within city limits to carry liability insurance. While this local law does offer some protection to those drivers involved in scooter-motor vehicle accidents, it does little to help motorists in other parts of the state.