In 2019, electric scooters are a desirable means of transport for a lot of people.
Numerous young adults, as well as students, use electric scooters to move from one point to another. Whether it’s for class, work or the park, people are using increasingly creative means to transport themselves.
One of the key reasons and benefits of riding an electric scooter above other transport options is the fact that you never have to deal with the complexities of chaotic and busy roads or traffic jams. It is also relatively easy to get around town with an electric scooter.
If you’re looking to utilise an electric scooter to speed up your commute, it’s important you know how to stay safe on the road.
These measures are not only for avoiding accidents but also for safeguarding yourself from injuries in case you are ever involved in one.
Below you will find 5 electric scooter safety tips guaranteed to help you stay safe on the road.
1. Always Wear a Helmet
Wearing a helmet should always be the first thing you do prior to getting on your scooter. The risk associated with falling off a scooter, just like a bike, is considerably higher than if you were in a vehicle. It is due to this reason that electric scooter riders should wear a helmet to reduce the risk of head injuries in the event of an accident. The helmet should not only be a proper fit but also provide sufficient cushioning in case of a fall.
The best electric scooters on the market today actually come with a helmet as part of the package. Make sure that you first try on the helmet to be sure that it properly fits before you take a ride. Consider asking an expert’s help in finding the right helmet for optimal protection.
According to the soft tissue pain management experts at Northern Myotherapy, “you should also replace the helmet if it is cracked after a serious fall. Soft tissue, and other structural injuries, may be prevented or at least minimised when you wear adequate safety protection. So make sure you ride safely.”
2. Keep Your Handles on the Handles While Riding
You must never attempt to ride the scooter with one hand no matter how tempting that might be. While some people like having their morning coffee while riding or just want to do stunts, riding a scooter with just one hand increases the risk of getting into an accident or losing control.
The best way to have complete control of the scooter is to operate it with both hands. That way, it will be easier to swerve to avoid hitting a pedestrian or something without falling off. You should consider putting everything in a backpack and carrying it on your back as opposed to holding it with one hand.
3. Start Slow
Besides having safety gear on, one of the best ways to stay safe on the road is to develop your scooter skills. A good way to do this is to ensure that you start slowly each time. While you might be late for work, hitting the accelerator on full throttle is never the ideal way to do it.
According to the general electrical experts from Izco Electrical, some of the electric scooters actually have a motor that’s so powerful that it can easily throw you off balance or even off the scooter itself when on full throttle. They explain, “electric scooters have a higher torque compared to gasoline scooters, which is noticeable in the start and stop situations. For novice riders that can make a huge difference and should always be factored into the purchase and use of an electric scooter.”
Don’t forget to start slow before you pick up speed to be safe. Starting slowly also allows you to be more aware of your surrounding and their response when taking off. It is also important to be careful when riding on busy streets and unfamiliar roads.
4. Always Keep the Battery Charged
Electric scooters run on battery power and the batteries have to be fully charged if the scooter is to run smoothly without malfunctioning. The vast majority of electric scooters are capable of covering at least 20 miles on a single full charge.
Still, it is important to remember that the distance covered on a single charge will depend on the load and terrain. Always keeping your battery fully charged reduces the risk of running out of charge when dashing off to school or work.
If you plan to go for a longer ride i.e. over 20 kilometres, you need to identify recharging spots, and don’t forget to take the recharging system with you. It is the only way you can get additional miles and get home safely without running out of charge at night or in the evening.
5. Avoid headphones and Mobile Phones
Listening to music via headphones or using the phone is one risk you need to avoid. First, answering a phone call while you are riding means that you will have to use one hand and it also diverts your attention away from the road thus putting both yourself and other road users at risk too.
According to the adolescent health experts from Thinking Families, many young adults naturally struggle with focus, making riding electric scooters a safety hazard if they cannot stay alert. They explain “there are many reasons why adolescents may struggle with focus. From anxiety to ADHD, to other things happening in their lives, to youthful curiosity, staying focused on the road may be a challenge. Listening to music on your headphones can actually make the situation worse. They will not hear the traffic behind them, which can be quite a great risk in itself.”
As a rule of thumb, if you must make a phone call, do it prior to getting on the scooter. If you are already on the road, let the incoming calls go to voicemail. This way, you will concentrate better on the road.
It can also be a good idea to have a reflector on while riding your scooter at night. Reflectors allow other road users to see you at night, which reduces the chances of a truck or car running you over. Used the right way, an electric scooter can save you a lot of time on the road. It provides a convenient way of moving from one point to another without having to worry about fuel or traffic.