Everything today seems to be dangerous.
You can’t go outside without something risking your safety.
So when you hit the street with a motorized device that can hit speeds of up to 25 mph, a lot of people are going to question how safe it really is.
I’m talking about electric skateboards.
Regular skateboarding already presents its risks, so electric skateboarding must be 10 times more dangerous right?
Not so fast…
Electric skateboard accidents and deaths are not as common as you may think.
Most of the motorized devices that caused injuries and deaths in recent years actually came from Hoverboards.
And Hoverboards are not electric skateboards…
That being said, there are certainly plenty of risks you should be aware of when you take your e-board for a spin.
Let’s take a real deep look into whether or not electric skateboarding is actually safe!
Is Electric Skateboarding Safe?
Yes, if done correctly, electric skateboarding is a safe and fun practice for both adults and kids.
It’s when you start to go reckless and not wear the proper safety gear that creates a dangerous environment for both you and others.
Must Know Safety Tips And Tricks
Being prepared for the road ahead will help you stay out of trouble.
Safety is your own responsibility, and no one elses. It’s up to you to take care of yourself and know how to react in certain situations.
Here are some must know safety tips to help keep you safe on your electric skateboard.
Wear A Helmet
It may be obvious, but I couldn’t tell you the amount of times I’ve seen riders not wearing a helmet when on their board.
All it takes is a simple slip and boom you can have some pretty lasting brain damage.
But don’t just take it from me…
Check out this cycling statistic on brain injuries:
“Seventy-eight percent of adult cyclists and 88 percent of young riders who suffered head and neck injuries were not wearing helmets when they were injured.”
If you’re still not convinced think about the risk vs the reward for just putting your helmet on.
Take 5 seconds to attach your helmet or possibly spending the rest of your life with permanent brain damage. It’s your choice.
Similar to a helmet, protective knee, elbow, and wrist padding will help prevent you from getting some pretty serious road rash.
Road rash is caused from sliding on pavement and can leave some pretty long lasting and painful wounds.
But padding doesn’t just help protect from road rash but also saves your joints.
When you fall off anything, the first body parts to hit the ground involve joints like your knees, wrists, elbows, and shoulders.
Contact with the ground at higher speeds will easily dislocate and break your joints.
While padding is not full proof, it’s much better than not wearing anything.
Lights and Neon Vests
Riding at night is particularly dangerous because your visibility goes down a lot.
There’s a good chance that without any lights and/or reflectors, an oncoming car through won’t see you.
You should look into purchasing some lights like the SL-200 Shred Lights which are easily mounted onto the trunks of your board. Comes with both headlights and taillights and offer 6 different modes.
If you don’t do that consider wearing a headlamp at the very least.
And just for good measure it’s always a good idea to wear some kind of reflector.
My best recommendation is to wear a neon vest or jacket. There’s a reason why police officers wear these at night. Any sort of light that touches the neon vest will bounce right off and easily be seen by any individuals nearby.
I know, this tip sounds like a motherly one, but it’s the truth.
I push my e-boards to the limit quite often, but there is a time and a place for everything.
Some roads are too dangerous and are really not a safe place.
Simple obstacles like pebbles, potholes, and rough pavement added with high speed can send you flying into orbit.
Want another reason to slow down?
Have you ever tried braking on an electric skateboard?
Answer: it’s not that easy, especially if you’re going fast!
Breaking on a board needs to be done over a longer distance. You can’t just go 20mph and hit the brakes as hard as you can!
You’ll go flying. Nothing is holding you back from gravity and velocity.
But if you’re traveling slow enough, braking will be entirely safer, easier, and smoother.
Avoid Inclement Weather
Riding in the rain is dangerous, PERIOD.
And riding in the snow is even worse…
First off, most boards are not meant to really get soaked.
Riding on a misty day is different than powering through in a thunderstorm.
Even my “waterproof” Ownboard Mini KT ended up dying because the battery got destroyed by water. I thought it could handle a super rainy day.
Not only was it miserable to ride in the rain, but my board ended up breaking too! (Cost me $80 to fix!)
A general word of advice: If you wouldn’t ride a motorcycle due to the weather, don’t ride your electric skateboard.
Rain and snow just create super slippery conditions that will put your safety at risk.
I’ve also rode in the snow before and totally wiped out. I wasn’t even going that fast, but I landed straight on my back. Luckily I wasn’t seriously hurt, but I learned my lesson…
Know The Law/Rules
Now I know there are a lot of dumb laws out there, but most of the laws in this world were designed to help keep people safe.
The rules of the road are no different.
This goes back to what I was saying about reckless behavior.
If you want to be stupid go ahead, but be prepared to face the consequences.
Different towns and cities will have different rules regarding riding electric skateboards. It’s a good idea to do your own research to find out the laws in your own jurisdiction.
Although most big cities will almost always deny riding on sidewalks to due the danger of pedestrian collisions.
If you’re in a small town, I highly doubt that will be an issue…
Watch For Obstacles
It may be obvious, but sometimes the littlest rock or ditch can have you fall off your board.
Staying safe means watching for even the littlest of obstacles.
The same way you drive a car, you should drive your board.
Think about it… you have to receive all the information in front of you and make calculated decisions sometimes within split seconds.
If a car hops out in front of you, what are you going to do?
You know you either have to brake or hop off you board.
Be prepared for anything.
Pay Attention And Avoid Distractions
You can’t ride you board if you’re in lala land… Paying attention is key.
Yes, going for a ride can be both therapeutic and relaxing, but that doesn’t mean you can let your guard down.
Riding your board while looking at Facebook updates and your Instagram feed is going to get you hurt and probably crack your phone screen for good measure!