Safety warning after e-scooter rider, 14, is killed by a minibus

Coroner issues warning over safety concerns after e-scooter rider, 14, is killed by a minibus

  • E-scooter deaths have doubled since police stopped seizing them on the roads
  • Fatima Abukar, 14, died she after lost control alongside a minibus  
  • The schoolgirl who wasn’t wearing a helmet suffered catastrophic head injuries
  • Coroner said rise in deaths and Scotland Yard’s decision is a direct correlation

E-scooter deaths have doubled since police stopped seizing them on the roads, a coroner has warned after a 14-year-old rider died in a collision with a minibus. 

Fatima Abukar was riding a battery powered e-scooter in East Ham, London, when she lost control while alongside a minibus and fell under its wheels. 

The schoolgirl, who wasn’t wearing a helmet, suffered catastrophic head injuries and died a short time later despite the efforts of an off-duty medic to save her. 

Now a coroner has raised fresh safety fears about the electric devices, warning that fatalities have doubled in the first six months of 2022 compared to the same period last year. 

An illegal e-scooter rider driving without a helmet or any protection gear 

In a report calling for action to prevent future deaths, Graeme Irvine, senior coroner in east London, said there was a direct correlation between the rise in deaths and Scotland Yard’s decision last November to no longer routinely seize e-scooters being ridden illegally on public roads. 

Britain’s biggest force announced officers will only confiscate them from repeat offenders or when ‘necessary to keep the public safe’. 

The force seized about 4,000 privately owned e-scooters last year, but that figure has dropped to 1,100 this year after the change in enforcement policy. 

Any illegal rider stopped now has the law explained to them by an officer rather than see their scooter immediately seized. 

There has been eight e-scooters deaths in London since 2019, with a total of 31 nationally, an inquest into Fatima’s death was told last week. 

In his report, Mr Irvine said: ‘An inverse correlation exists between the rate of legal enforcement and the rate of deaths caused by e-scooters.’ 

The collision involving Fatima happened at 1.30pm on March 21 when she was travelling at no more than 11mph. 

Following her death, friends paid tribute to Fatima as a ‘a little rainbow of colour and fun’. One said: ‘She has two brothers and two sisters. She loved music.’ 

Mr Irvine ruled that Fatima had died from injuries as a result of a road traffic collision.

 His report has been sent to the Met Police, Transport for London, London mayor Sadiq Khan, Transport Secretary Mark Harper, Home Secretary Suella Braverman and a major e-scooter retailer.

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