Electric scooters (Yonhap News TV)
The number of accidents involving e-scooters more than tripled between 2018 and 2020 in Seoul, fire authorities said Wednesday.
The Seoul Metropolitan Fire and Disaster Headquarters said it responded to 366 e-scooter accidents over the three years: 57 in 2018, 117 in 2019 and 192 in 2020.
The increase is in line with growing public use of the personal mobility devices.
Collisions between e-scooters and cars occurred the most frequently, accounting for 107 cases, or 29.2 percent of the total. Collisions between the device and pedestrians took up 25 cases, or 6.8 percent.
There were a total of 54 fire outbreaks involving e-scooters -- 10 in 2018, 23 in 2019 and 21 in 2020.
More than half of the cases, or 29, occurred while the device was charging, while in 12 cases, the device was not in use.
Of the nine fire accidents that occurred between January and April this year, five happened while the device was charging.
"To prevent fires, once charging is complete, the power should be turned off," a city fire official said. "Consumers should also make sure their e-scooters have the KC safety certification mark."
The official also advised consumers to charge their device in an open outdoor space, not inside entrances or emergency exits and to avoid leaving the house for a long time or going to sleep if charging indoors is inevitable. (Yonhap)