Woman Nearly Lost Leg After Suffering Double Fracture And Severed Artery
A student who nearly lost a leg in an e-moped crash is warning of the dangers of the machines amid their growing popularity.
Eleanor Young, of Nettleham, near Lincoln, suffered a double break of her right leg and a severed artery when the e-moped she was on was involved in a collision with a Smart Car.
The collision happened when the 21-year-old was on holiday in Rome. The modern languages student at Newcastle University was taken to hospital where surgeons battled to save her leg.
Student left in intensive care after e-moped crash
Eleanor, who also suffered dental fractures, was in intensive care for five days and thereafter transferred to an orthopaedic ward. She underwent three operations before being flown home.
She has since undergone five further surgeries on her leg since returning to the UK. These have included removing and replacing metal rods, fixing a metal cage on her leg and re-positioning the bone to help it fuse properly.
Eleanor was forced to give up university for a year and had to move home to be cared for by her parents.
Lawyers investigate e-moped collision
Eleanor has instructed specialist lawyer at Irwin Mitchell to investigate and help her access the specialist rehabilitation she requires because of her injuries.
With investigations into the incident which happened in August 2020 continuing, Eleanor and her legal team are advising people to take care while riding e-mopeds and e-scooters.
Jayne Murphy, the specialist international serious injury lawyer at Irwin Mitchell representing Eleanor, said: “Eleanor suffered incredibly serious injuries in the collision and is lucky not to have lost her leg. The last 18 months or so and trying to come to terms with her injuries have been incredibly difficult.
“While Eleanor has made progress in her recovery she still faces many challenges.
“We’re now investigating the circumstances around Eleanor’s accident and are determined to support her through her recovery.”
E-scooters and the law
In the UK there is now a high volume of e-scooters being made available to the public. E-scooters can only be ridden on public roads in specific parts of the country, where there are government backed trials that offer approved vehicles for rent. Privately owned e-scooters can only be ridden on private land. However, different rules exist abroad.
Jayne Murphy, of Irwin Mitchell, added: “E-mopeds are one of a number of new electric vehicles now in use across Europe and the UK. The most common type is an e-scooter and there is an emerging of trend of high accident rates connected with their use. Those using e-mopeds and e-scooters, whether at home or whilst on holiday need to exercise caution as these vehicles are unfamiliar to other road users, including pedestrians.
“While e-scooters can only be ridden on the road in certain trial locations here in the UK, they are much more common in some cities overseas.
“Many e-scooters hired through registered companies will have some level of insurance, but the amount can vary, therefore it’s important this is checked before hiring a vehicle.
“Whether hiring an e-scooter at home or an e-moped abroad it’s vital that people not only thoroughly research the level of insurance but take care at all times and ensure they wear suitable protective equipment.”
E-mopeds: Eleanor Young's story
Eleanor said: “Thankfully I can’t remember too much of the accident but I remember a few minutes later being on the ground and trying to get up. A passer-by told me not to and I immediately knew something was seriously wrong with my leg.
“I was in that much shock that I couldn’t really feel much pain. I remember going to hospital and having an MRI scan but the next thing I remember was waking up in hospital the next day with rods in my legs and being told that they nearly had to amputate my leg.
“Part of the bone in my leg had been shattered. I had an open compound fracture of my right tibia and severed an artery in my leg. I had two emergency surgeries abroad, one to save my leg and a second to put rods in to fix the bone together.
“Following the incident I’ve had to have a number of surgeries to fix my leg as it was deformed and I had non-union of the bone. It will never be the same again.
“My life went from an ordinary one for someone my age to one that seemed to be medical appointment after medical appointment and further operations.
“The collision has affected my life in so many ways. I had to defer a year of university and had to move back home with my parents. I was unable to properly get out of the house for months and I felt very alone. Since August 2020 I’ve had eight surgeries on my leg and a surgical procedure in my mouth due to severe damage to my teeth.
“A lot of people, particularly younger people think e-scooters and e-mopeds are fun. However, like any vehicles they can lead to serious injuries.”
E-moped and E-scooters Top Five Safety Tips
With the use of e-mopeds and e-scooters on the streets increasing, serious injury lawyers at Irwin Mitchell have issued the following advice to keep riders safe.
1. Know the law
E-scooters can only be ridden on public roads in the UK in town and cities where government backed trials that offer approved vehicles for rent, are being held.
2. Do your research
If you’re hiring an e-scooter or e-moped as part of an approve trial insurance will be included within the rental. It is wise to check the level of cover and what you are and are not covered against.
If you are injured by an e-scooter or e-moped in an area which is participating in a pilot, there should be insurance which covers third party liability.
3. Wear protective equipment
Suitable clothing and safety equipment such as a helmet, mouth guard as well as knee and elbow pads can help reduce the risk of serious injury in case of an accident.
4. Check the tyres
Always assess a moped/scooter’s tyres, including their appearance and pressure before use.
5. Check the roads
Obstacles and road defects such as potholes can result in accidents. Always keep an eye out for such obstacles and avoid where possible, or if approaching a speed bump, slow down.
Find out more about electric vehicles and our expertise in supporting people following road collisions at our dedicated e-scooters section. Alternatively to speak to an expert contact us or call 0370 1500 100.