SAN ANTONIO — Electric scooters are flooding the San Antonio streets, and the number of people injured behind the handlebars is increasing. On Tuesday morning, a woman was taken to SAMMC in serious condition after falling off a scooter in northeast San Antonio.
The San Antonio Fire Department says they receive at least two calls a day about people injured on scooters.
Between October and November, paramedics responded to 46 separate 9-1-1 calls, according to Woody Woodward with SAFD. In the last 11 months, scooter injuries landed a dozen people in at the University Hospital trauma center, according to Elizabeth Allen with University Health System.
"Just about every single person I've talked to says they go way faster," UT Health Doctor Brian Parker said.
Some scooters reach nearly 15 miles per hour and can cause serious injuries.
"We see anything from the minor bumps and scrapes, some people will have broken both bones in their forearm,” Dr.Parker said. “I've seen one or two cases with pretty bad head injuries causing concussions.”
He says over the last three or four months he’s seen an increase in people coming into the hospital with scooter injuries.
“Now, it's not unheard of to see one a week," Dr. Parker said. “Most times they say that they were just riding their scooter and somebody walked out in front of them, or they hit a curb or a pothole and they lost control."
Lime and Bird are two major scooter companies in San Antonio. Lime offers a safety video for riders online and Bird requires a helmet to operate the scooter, but Dr. Parker says most people don’t take the necessary precautions before taking a ride.
He stressed the importance of a helmet on the bike to help prevent head injuries and wearing pants and a long sleeve shirt to minimize the scrapes.