Some Lime Scooters Experiencing Sudden Excessive Braking!

Austin Bob

Dec 15, 2018
What City & State do you work in?
San Antonio
Lime warns riders: Some scooters experience 'sudden excessive braking' while going downhill

The Dallas Morning News is reporting are saying that some Lime scooters are experiencing sudden excessive braking while going downhill. This is just another in a long line of stories about how unsafe these scooters are. Honestly, if I read that scooters were experiencing this - even a tiny percentage of the time there's not a chance in the world I would ever get on one. I've literally never seen a more dangerous business pop onto the scene and become as popular as this one. Hospitals around the country are reporting a large number of serious scooter injuries coming in - especially compared to the number of bicycles injuries they normally see. The number of scooter injuries is far higher than bike injuries.

Safety Update - February 2019 is the headline on Lime's blog this month. I give them credit for their transparency and going public with it, but not so much credit for putting such an unsafe product out there. And yes, they and all the other scooter companies definitely know how unsafe these things are.

On this page they made the rather startling admission that... well, let me just quote them:

Recently we detected a bug in the firmware of our scooter fleet that under rare circumstances could cause sudden excessive braking during use. Through extensive analysis by both our internal team and outside experts, we diagnosed the issue in a laboratory environment and determined that in very rare cases -- usually riding downhill at top speed while hitting a pothole or other obstacle -- excessive brake force on the front wheel can occur, resulting in a scooter stopping unexpectedly.
When they say, "resulting in a scooter stopping unexpectedly" I think what they really mean is "resulting in a scooter throwing riders off and onto the hard pavement"! That's probably what they should of said... in the interest of truth and full transparency. But, on the other hand I give them credit for at least admitting some passengers have been injured, although I question the tiny minuscule number of riders they say it has affected (0.0045% - that's less than half of one percent... but still that's one for every 200 riders - which considering their thousands of riders - is A LOT)!

They did give some good advice - for ALL scooter users, not just Lime customers, that are worth repeating here:
  1. Before starting your Lime trip, walk around the scooter and do a visual inspection of the hardware. Is the vehicle body in good condition? If not, don’t use that vehicle; report it to our customer service team and then select another vehicle.
  2. Once you start your Lime trip, give the brake a tight squeeze. If the brake does not engage properly and immediately stop the vehicle, dismount, end the trip and notify Lime customer service.
  3. Use extra caution in the next few days while we issue the final firmware update -- especially when riding downhill. Always stay in full control of your scooter and don’t go full speed while riding downhill.
  4. Comply with any scooter audible or visual warnings to slow or adjust your speed.
  5. Ride defensively: wear a helmet and reflective or bright clothing, respect the right of way and be cautious of other cars, trucks and pedestrians, don’t ever ride under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and always ride in bike lanes when available.
  6. Ride smart: follow the rules of the road, keep both hands on the handle bars, don’t use your mobile device while riding and avoid wearing headphones.