If you enjoy riding a scooter recreationally, one of the things that you may appreciate about California is that it is scooter friendly. Whether you use a moped, electric scooter or larger vehicle, you should know that you have a right to use the roadways as intended as long as you are following the state’s laws.
If you choose to use a scooter, one of the first things you have to determine is if the scooter is classified as a moped or not. If the scooter has an electric engine that has a maximum 50cc, has pedals for human propulsion and has an automatic transmission, it will automatically be considered a moped. If it doesn’t have pedals, it may sometimes qualify as a moped, but not always.
If your scooter doesn’t meet the definition of a moped, there will be different rules that apply to its use compared to scooters that do meet the definition of a moped. For example, if a scooter meets the definition of a moped, you will need to be licensed to drive it. You also have to be at least 16 to drive a moped.
What sets an electric scooter apart from a moped?
Electric scooters are a little different than those that qualify as mopeds. They usually have:
- Two wheels
- A deck to stand or sit on
- A motor
A vehicle that only classifies as a scooter doesn’t require a driver’s license. No license plate will be required, either. You will need to wear a helmet, though, and you have to stay on the roads (not the sidewalks).
Scooters generally cannot go faster than 25 mph, so keep that in mind.
What should you do if someone hits you while you’re on a scooter?
You have the same rights as any other road user if you are hit by someone while using a scooter. If they hit you and are at fault for the collision, you can make a personal injury claim and seek compensation from them. Like with any other crash, it’s important to seek medical care and to get treated first, then you can begin looking into your legal options for handling the financial aspects of your case.