Reno, NV Scooter Accident Lawyer
Mopeds and scooters have increased in popularity in recent years, providing people with a fun, environmentally friendly, and cost-efficient mode of transportation. In cities like Reno, where traffic is heavy and parking is limited, scooters have become a favored alternative to driving a car.
While motor scooters are an enjoyable way to get around the city, they come with certain dangers. Due to their small size, motor scooters are far less visible to drivers than a car or another large vehicle. In addition, scooters and mopeds don’t come equipped with safety features and fail to offer riders protection in the event of an accident.
Thus, accidents involving scooters and mopeds can leave riders coping with severe injuries. If you or someone you love has been involved in a scooter or moped accident, the Reno personal injury lawyers at Richard Harris Law Firm are here to help. Call us 24/7 or start a live chat to schedule a free case consultation.
Moped and Scooter Laws in Reno, NV
Nevada has specific laws that apply to motor scooters (classified as mopeds) and motor scooters (classified as motorcycles).
Under state law, a “moped” is defined as a scooter that looks and handles like a bicycle but is propelled by a small engine that produces no more than 2-brake horsepower. If it is electric, it must produce 1500 watts or less.
The moped can have no more than 3 wheels in contact with the ground and should not be capable of reaching speeds greater than 30 mph.
Nevada does require you to register your moped, but unlike motorcycles, you only have to register it once, not annually. Once registered, you are allowed to ride the moped on state roadways. Moped riders aren’t currently required to hold any sort of liability insurance.
Nevada considers gas-powered scooters to be motorcycles. State law defines motorcycles as “every motor vehicle designed to travel on not more than three wheels in contact with the road.”
If a scooter has a piston displacement of over 50 cc, it is automatically classed as a motorcycle. In addition, scooters capable of exceeding 30 mph on level ground and produce more than 2-brake horsepower are considered to be motorcycles.
Scooters are subject to the same registration, licensing, and insurance requirements as motorcycles.
In recent years, electric scooters have become a popular mode of transportation in major metro areas including Reno, which has transformed the law. When e-scooters first came on the scene, there were few laws regulating their use on public roadways.
That changed in 2019 when Nevada enacted the following regulations governing the use of e-scooters:
- E-scooters must have a maximum speed of 20 mph
- E-scooters must not weigh more than 100 lbs without a rider
- E-scooter riders must be at least 16 years of age
- E-scooters do not need to be licensed or registered with the DMV
Common Causes of Reno Scooter and Moped Accidents
Moped and scooter accidents are becoming increasingly more common in Reno as gas prices increase and people search for affordable ways to commute. Our Reno scooter accident lawyers have helped clients recover compensation for many different types of accidents.
The following are some common scenarios and factors that may lead to a scooter accident:
- Left-hand turns: A car driver may underestimate the speed that a moped or scooter is traveling and turn left in front of the smaller vehicle without having enough time to get across the opposing traffic. The result is a “t-bone” accident with the scooter colliding with the side of the car.
- Stopping time: Mopeds require less time to stop, which means that if a vehicle behind the rider is tailgating or speeding, the moped rider could be involved in a rear-end collision accident.
- Lane changes: Scooters and mopeds lack the visibility that cars and trucks have. As a result, drivers of standard-size vehicles may switch lanes without realizing the scooter is nearby.
- Road conditions: While cars are able to ride over potholes and gravel with relatively little difficulty, they can cause a scooter to lose traction or a rider to flip over the handlebars.
- Distracted drivers: Motorists who are texting, talking on the phone, or engaging in other forms of distracted driving may collide with a scooter.
- Inexperienced riders: Tourists who have never ridden scooters or mopeds before may rent them as a fun way to get around the city. Unfortunately, these inexperienced riders may not know how to properly control and safely operate the seemingly easy vehicles.
- Driving under the influence: Many moped or scooter accidents involve one or more parties driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Failure to use safety equipment: If a scooter driver is involved in an accident, even a slight bump to the head can cause a concussion or another traumatic brain injury. It is with good reason that it is illegal in Nevada for riders to operate a moped without wearing a helmet.
Reno Scooter and Moped Injuries
Negligent drivers are often responsible for scooter accidents in the city. Since scooters and mopeds don’t offer the structural protection that a car does, riders are usually directly impacted by collisions.
The following are some of the different injuries suffered after a Reno scooter accident:
- Broken bones: Fractures and broken bones are commonly sustained by victims of scooter accidents. These injuries can take weeks or months to heal and may even require surgery or rehabilitation therapy.
- Internal injuries: These types of injuries are not always immediately apparent, which is one reason riders should seek medical attention immediately after an accident. Internal injuries such as brain bleeds can be fatal if not soon treated.
- Spinal injuries: Damage to the spine can completely alter a person’s life. If the spinal cord is broken, the person could be paralyzed below the point of the injury.
- Traumatic brain injuries: These types of injuries commonly occur in scooter accidents where riders weren’t wearing a helmet. TBIs may include concussions, hematomas, skull fractures, or brain bleeds.
If you have been injured in a Reno scooter accident, contact a scooter accident attorney as soon as possible. When we take on your case, our skilled legal team will work hard to ensure you receive the compensation needed to get the quality medical care you deserve.
Why Hire an Attorney After Your Reno Scooter Accident Injury
After suffering a moped or scooter accident injury, you may be wondering whether you need to hire a personal injury lawyer or if you can file a claim on your own. Be assured, there are many benefits of having a Reno scooter accident lawyer on your side.
The Reno scooter accident injury lawyers at our firm can investigate the cause of the accident, determine fault, and identify all liable parties. Our legal team knows how to calculate the true value of personal injury claims. We can determine what types of damages you can pursue and what amount. Our attorneys are excellent negotiators and can ensure that you receive the maximum compensation you deserve.
Depending on the individual circumstances surrounding your accident, you may be entitled to compensation for:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Property damage
- Loss of future earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment
- Wrongful death
Talk to Our Reno Scooter Accident Injury Lawyers for Free
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in an accident involving a moped, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your losses. Scooter and moped accidents are some of the various practice areas our firm has experience in. Our experienced and compassionate scooter accident injury lawyers are here and ready to talk to you about your case.
Richard Harris Law Firm has proudly been representing vehicle accident injury victims in Reno and Las Vegas, NV, for over 40 years. We have helped our valued clients recover over $1 billion in damages without ever charging out-of-pocket fees. Our legal team takes cases on a contingency fee basis, which means you owe us nothing unless you are awarded a settlement.
Trust your scooter accident case with the experienced lawyers at Richard Harris Law Firm. Call or text us 24/7 to schedule a free case consultation with a member of our legal team today. We’ll make your appointment at a time and location convenient for you.