ACC pays out $200,000 for e-scooter injury claims

File Photo.

Electric scooter injury claims have seen ACC pay out more than $200,000 in just three months.

From October 14 to January 11, ACC received 655 e-scooter-related injury claims across the country - totalling a pay out of $228,364, with the majority in Auckland.

Riders losing their balance and personal control was the main cause of the claims, followed by collisions and twisting movements, with knees, hands and wrists among the most injured body parts. 

In October 2018, California-based company Lime launched 600 e-scooters in Auckland and 400 in Christchurch, with more recently released in Hutt Valley and Dunedin

ACC's senior media adviser Lisa Rautenbach said 378 claims were made in Auckland, totaling $159,942.

There were 208 claims in Christchurch with a total pay out of $62,127, while 37 claims from Hutt Valley resulted in a cost of $388. 

About 32 e-scooter injury claims were made by people in other parts of the country, costing ACC $5907.

The week of November 4 saw a record number of 70 e-scooter injury claims made to ACC, she added. 

The figures come days after Auckland Council confirmed the trial period for Lime e-scooters had been extended until March

 Auckland Council's chief operating officer Dean Kimpton says e-scooters had become popular in Auckland, with a high uptake of people renting them. There had also been a significant growth in people buying their own e-scooters, he said. 

Concerns about the safety of e-scooters came soon after Lime launched them in Auckland and Christchurch.

E-scooters are legally allowed on footpaths and Lime e-scooters can travel at speeds of up to 27kmh. 

In Auckland, these concerns - raised by councillor Christine Fletcher and some residents - resulted in Auckland mayor Phil Goff calling for an urgent council report looking at the safety issues. 

At Thursday's announcement, Auckland Transport's chief executive Shane Ellison says safety was a priority. 

"Electric scooters can be ridden on footpaths, roads and separated cycleways – that means they share their path with people, cars and bikes - so safety considerations must be a priority," says shane.

As part of the trial extension, Lime agreed to have "roaming ambassadors" to educate riders about safety and pop-up tents in Auckland for demonstrations and safety training.

/ Stuff