A scooter rider was injured and cited for riding on the sidewalk on Buckhead’s Peachtree Road Aug. 8. It was the second reported scooter injury in Buckhead within a week, and came hours after the city announced new restrictions on the vehicles as it scrambles to establish safety guidelines.
According to a police report, the accident happened around 6:40 p.m. at the Texaco gas station at 1888 Peachtree Road at Collier Road, where a motor vehicle driver exiting a driveway collided with the scooter, which was being ridden on the sidewalk. The scooter rider, an unidentified male, was found lying on the ground and “complaining of back pain,” according to the police report. He was transported to Grady Hospital.
According to the police report, the scooter rider was “found to be at fault” and cited for operating the scooter on a sidewalk. Under current city law, scooters are banned from sidewalks – even though they are typically parked there – and must be ridden in the street or on bicycle paths and lanes. That is among the parts of the law that have been questioned by advocates in recent weeks after a string of serious and sometimes fatal accidents involving scooters and motor vehicles.
Another scooter accident on Peachtree Road on Aug. 5 left a juvenile with a head injury.
The latest accident happened the same day that the city announced a ban on operating the rentable scooters during part of the night, a measure intended to improve safety while long-term fixes are studied. The ban, which begins Aug. 9, covers the hours of 9 p.m. to 4 a.m. The ban would not have prevented the Aug. 8 accident, which happened before sunset.
The three fatal scooter accidents that have happened in Atlanta all happened at night and the measure is intended to reduce the danger. However, it is unclear why the city set the 9 p.m. to 4 a.m. times, as it remains dark after 4 a.m., and sunset already comes earlier than 9 p.m. By the end of August, Atlanta’s sunset will come around 8 p.m. and sunrise around 7 a.m. The city’s press office did not immediately respond to questions about the timing.
The latest Buckhead accident also came the same day that local City Councilmember Howard Shook said the string of deaths and injuries was proving true his worst fear about legalizing scooters – a decision on which he was the lone “no” vote. “There are times I absolutely despise being right and this is chief among them,” he said.