Most days, when Ashanti Jordan's shift at Broward General Medical Centre in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, ended, she got a ride home from co-workers.

But on a sunny day in late December, the outgoing 28-year-old security guard decided she would make the 6.5km journey home on a Lime scooter, one of many littering the city's streets, according to family members.

Jordan, who was not wearing a helmet at the time, was about halfway home when she collided with a Toyota Corolla at an intersection in a residential area. The collision threw Jordan about 30m and left her with broken bones, rib fractures and a catastrophic brain injury, family members say.

Now, more than six weeks after the accident, Jordan remains in a persistent vegetative state and has begun suffering from seizures, forcing doctors to return her to the hospital's intensive care unit in recent days, family member say.

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Yesterday, Tracy Jordan, Ashanti's mother, announced plans to sue Lime - one of the world's largest electric scooter companies - on her daughter's behalf for negligence, according to her lawyer, Todd Falzone, a Fort Lauderdale, Florida, personal injury lawyer.

Falzone said Lime's app includes language that specifically instructs people not to operate scooters on local footpaths, pushing them onto city streets instead.

Operating a motorised scooter on the street is against the law in Florida and in Fort Lauderdale, though the city does permit e-scooters to be ridden on footpaths.

Because she followed Lime's instructions, Falzone said, Jordan avoided the footpath and was catastrophically injured.

"To this day they are telling users to break the law and, as a result, people are doing that," Falzone said. "They are getting hit by cars, they are hitting pedestrians, they're having all manner of accidents that shouldn't be occurring."

"Unfortunately," he added, "Ashanti is going to pay for this with her life."

Lime did not immediately respond to a request for comment.


The lawsuit arrives about a week after a 21-year-old exchange student from Ireland was killed in an accident involving a Lime scooter and vehicle in Austin, Texas. The student, Mark Sands, appears to be the third person killed in an accident involving Lime scooters in recent months.

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The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention is studying the health risks associated with e-scooters by analysing injuries to riders and pedestrians in Austin, Texas, over two months. Last week, a CDC spokesperson said that the study should be finalised in the northern spring.

In Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where e-scooters arrived in November, a series of high-profile accidents has raised controversy over the devices, according to the South Florida Sun Sentinel.

"According to Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue, between December 1 and January 31, there have been 40 incidents involving scooters," ABC affiliate WPLG reported. "A total of 31 of them required someone be transported to the hospital, and four of those were level-1 traumas."

Lime, which has admitted that some of their models have caught fire and broken in half while being ridden, has received hefty investments from Uber and Alphabet and, according to Bloomberg, is valued at more than US$1 billion.