It was a day like any other. The weather was hot and the beaches were crowded. But it quickly turned into a day that Erica Davis would never forget.
“I took my three little boys to North Torrey Pines Beach to get active, running,” Davis said.
On Wednesday, Davis and her three boys were enjoying a beautiful day at the beach when the unthinkable happened.
“I was in the water with my 2-year-old and my 4-year-old and turned around to check on my 6-year-old who was playing in a sandcastle with his friends,” Davis said. “And out of the corner of my eye I see two young boys on e-bikes going really fast.”
Davis said one of the boys lost control of his e-bike, hitting his 6-year-old son.
“I can still see his face and his body touching the ground,” Davis said. “It’s horrible.”
The young boy was taken to Rady Children’s Hospital with cuts and bruises all over his body.
“Just so grateful he’s alive,” Davis said.
This frightening situation is not isolated.
Megan Demott, an emergency physician, said that over the past few months, area hospitals have seen an increase in the number of people presenting with e-bike-related injuries.
“We’re seeing quite a bit of that this summer,” Demott said. “And we’ve had extreme injuries before.”
And as the summer months progress, Demott predicts the situation will get worse.
“E-bikes go at a pretty high speed,” Demott said. “And I don’t think a lot of people realize how fast they can move.”
Electric bikes can travel between 18 and 20 mph. In California, there is no minimum age required to ride an e-bike, but a helmet is required for those 17 and under.
“We love all the activities in the summer, everyone goes out and has fun and has fun,” Demott said. “Just make sure you follow safety protocols.”
When it comes to e-bikes, Demott and Davis agree that safety is key above all else.
“I wouldn’t want another family to go through this,” Davis said. “It’s been so difficult and it’s a preventable incident that we should prevent in the future.”
Davis said she would like to see more regulations for e-bikers across San Diego, especially in parks and beaches where children are present.