Pointing out that accidents with electric scooters are "a serious public health problem" and that "a fall at 20 km/h without a helmet can cause serious brain injuries and death", the association is calling for tougher regulation.
"What are you thinking? In an accident, only a helmet can prevent trauma" is the message on a poster publicising the petition, under an image of a fall.
According to data from the National Institute of Medical Emergencies (INEM), in 2022 there were 1,691 scooter accidents, which represents an increase of 78% compared to the previous year and an average of 141 accidents per month.
"The number of serious victims of these accidents has also increased, namely (...) victims who have head injuries and those who need intensive care", says the statement.
Neglected safety standards
The non-profit association created by parents, doctors, and friends of people with traumatic brain injuries considers that scooters have "unquestionable advantages for the environment" and are "very practical" for those who live in cities, but notes that "in their use many safety standards are often neglected" and draws attention to "the economic and social consequences", both for families and for society of those injuries.
According to the association, the petition has already been signed by almost 550 people, including Óscar Gaspar, former Secretary of State for Health and president of the Portuguese Association of Private Hospitalization (APHP)), Rui Pego (radio broadcaster), Carlos Barbosa, president of the Automóvel Clube de Portugal (ACP), journalists Margarida Pinto Correia, Sónia Morais Santos and Mafalda Anjos, television presenter Júlia Pinheiro, as well as presenters and actors Diana Chaves, João Paulo Sousa and Miguel Costa.
"What is asked for with this petition is very simple: the protection of what is the most precious and most sensitive organ we have: the brain", indicates the Novamente, which hopes that more signatories "will join the cause".