E-Scooter crashes in Cedar Rapids

Updated: Jun. 10, 2021 at 10:49 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Two boys were still at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics on Thursday with life-threatening injuries after their scooter crashed into a car Wednesday afternoon.

The two boys were ages 12 and 8 were riding a rental scooter when they went through a stop sign and hit a car on Mount Vernon Road, but those with police said there were more crashes involving the scooters.

“We were just hanging out looking for something to do, so we just drove around,” said Cameryn Ellyson of Mount Vernon.

Ellyson and her two friends, Ella Pettinger and Sydney Marlow spent their Thursday evening in downtown Cedar Rapids like many, zooming around on E-Scooters. They said it was their first time riding them, and while they generally felt safe, there were moments of doubt.

“In the bike lane, you don’t see cars behind you,” said Pettinger. “You don’t know if the drivers were paying attention or if they were on their phone.”

Emergency responders said last year they responded to nearly 30 incidents of E-scooters crashing into vehicles or people falling off them and getting hurt. There have been six incidents this year including a 15-year old who hit a curb and suffering minor injuries, and a female who crashed her scooter and suffered a concussion.

“It kind of puts a new perspective when you hear something like this happen,” Marlow said.

VEO’s website said people under the age of 18 shouldn’t be riding these scooters, and it violates the user’s contract. The Cedar Rapids Police Department said they don’t have a municipal code regarding E-scooters to enforce. This year at least 3-minors, not old enough to drive a car, have suffered injuries while riding the scooters.

“The scooters go fast and have breaks, and you ride on the street with other vehicles,” said Marlow.

The driver in Wednesday’s crash faces charges of driving with a suspended license and not being able to provide insurance.

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