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The Weil Journal

Electric Scooters Are Coming to Chicago

How to keep your Feet & Ankles safe with their arrival!

Now that Chicago has adopted an electric scooter program for a four month trial, I’ve had many people concerned about impending scooter injuries, in particular to the foot and ankle, ask me about how to stay safe.

There are a lot of benefits to scooters arriving in Chicago.  They are seen as a way of getting cars off the street while reducing congestion and pollution, and offering commuters a way to quickly cover the distance between home and the local transit stop, affordably (and without getting sweaty!)

But the arrival of electric scooters doesn’t come without controversy, primarily because cities have become somewhat a dumping ground for them – people have thrown them into rivers and left them in the middle of sidewalks, creating hazards for riders and pedestrians alike. There have been multiple injuries, and as many as eleven scooter rider deaths since the beginning of 2018, according to The Associated Press.

Some of the most common scooter injuries are broken arms, wrists and dislocated shoulders, along with more serious head traumas, from trying to break ones fall when someone loses control of the scooter.  When it comes to foot and ankle injuries related to the scooter, they come in different varieties.  When some is riding a scooter with flip flops, when they put their foot down, they can create a severe abrasion that is filled with particles from road.  This can lead to skin sloughing and infections.  In the same situation, toenail trauma can occur and part or all of the nail torn off and the subsequent pain and problems such as infection can ensue.  If riding in sandals, the likelihood of fracturing the toes or metatarsals is far more likely.  Proper foot wear is highly recommending before jumping on an electric scooter, as any of these problems necessitate a visit to a board-certified podiatric specialist for treatment.

Even when proper shoe gear is worn, if someone puts their foot down incorrectly, the foot can get caught under the scooter and cause severe ankle or Lis Franc sprains, or even worse, a serious fracture.

As you venture onto this new transportation mode for Chicago, be aware of the pitfalls, and always wear proper shoes, in addition to a helmet.  Should circumstances put you in an injured state, reach out to our urgent care F.A.S.T. clinic, located in Lincoln Park, where same-day appointments and short waits are guaranteed.

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