How Can I Safely Operate a Scooter?

By Peter DePaolis

Sadly, on July 5, a Southeast Washington DC man was killed on Benning Road after his scooter hit a concrete median. Photo of brain scan

According to WUSA-TV, the victim, 34, lost control of a 2012 Tao Tao scooter heading westbound on the 2800 block of the road. The scooter collided with a median and turned into traffic. The operator fell onto the ground after the crash—reports did not indicate if other motorists struck him when he was on the ground.

The man was transported to a local hospital where he later died. The accident occurred at around 1:43 a.m. The victim was allegedly commuting with two other scooter riders before the crash occurred. The incident remains under investigation. D.C. police have not determined if alcohol contributed to the crash.

Safely Operating a Scooter in and Washington D.C.

Much like motorcyclists, scooter operators need to approach their bikes with safety in mind. This includes avoiding dangerous habits like speeding, distracted operating or drunk driving.

Like motorcycles, scooters offer very little protections for riders. Often, when a scooter is involved in an accident with a larger vehicle, it results in death or catastrophic injuries. To avoid a scooter accident, the Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) recommends:

  • Being vigilant and using caution at intersections, paying attention to other drivers (many crashes occur at intersections, as other drivers fail to see riders and turn into them)
  • Making yourself visible (having reflective clothing and items on at night, making it easier for other drivers to see you)
  • Riding within your ability (Avoiding unnecessary turns on loose gravel or bridges)
  • Avoiding speeding (the faster you are going, the less time you have to react to other vehicles)

In addition to these items, we suggest wearing protective clothing like helmets, gloves, vests, pants and jackets, which can help reduce road rash or other serious injuries in the event of a crash.

Our Injury Attorneys Represent Motor Vehicle Accident Victims

Because they are more economical for some riders, scooters are a popular way to get around in the District and its neighboring cities. Keep in mind, if a negligent driver injures you in a scooter accident, you should speak to our attorneys about your legal rights.

We can investigate your crash and determine if you may be entitled to damages. Our attorneys have obtained million dollar verdicts and settlements for the victims of vehicle accidents.

You can reach us by clicking on the live chat option on this page.

Koonz, McKenney, Johnson & DePaolis L.L.P.

Washington, D.C. Injury Attorneys


About the Author
Peter DePaolis joined the firm in 1980 and has since represented a large number of individuals involved in automobile collisions, truck accidents, bus crashes, defective products, and medical malpractice cases. A significant portion of Mr. DePaolis’ practice is devoted to working on behalf of people suffering from asbestosis, mesothelioma, and other asbestos-related cancers. He has led his firm’s fight against the asbestos industry and has recovered over $30 million in damages for asbestos victims and their families.