A 27-year-old New Zealand man has been hospitalised with a broken jaw after the wheels on his Lime scooter locked up mid-ride, according to a report in the NZ Herald.
Liam Thompson was heading downhill on his way home from the shops in the Auckland suburb of Sunnynook on Friday evening when the wheels spontaneously locked in place. Thompson went flying off the scooter and slid across the concrete, telling the NZ Herald that it was “the most pain [he’d] felt in a while“.
Thompson said that he shouted for help for a while but after no one came to his assistance, he walked the kilometre back to his Totara Vale home. Thompson was taken by his wife to the local hospital, then transferred to Middlemore Hospital, with doctors concerned that his jaw would require surgery. He was discharged on Saturday with a broken jaw, a broken tooth, and a number of cuts and grazes.
Thompson said that he was certain it was a malfunction, as he was “in the middle of the path and it was clear – there were no bumps or anything” at the time that it locked up. In a statement, a spokesperson for Lime said that the company had “recently became aware of an operational issue affecting certain scooters” and that affected scooters had been removed from circulation.
According to a report from 1 News, a spokesperson for Auckland Council and Auckland Transport said that they were considering reevaluating their license agreement with Lime:
At this stage we are not receiving the assurances that we require and will be considering our options under the licence agreement if we do not urgently receive these. We have set out high expectations for scooter safety for Lime’s customers and other road users as part of Lime’s licence extension, and we expect issues like this to be raised with us as a priority.
A spokerson for Lime responded to Pedestrian.tv’s request as to whether the scooters removed from circulation were limited to New Zealand or if the issue was also affecting scooters in Australia with a statement that did not answer that question.
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