St. George Electric Scooter Accidents
These new electric scooters are cheap, easy, and fun. Many people are enjoying their use, however, with an increase in scooter riders, we are seeing a heavy increase in electric scooter accidents as some people on scooters are getting hit by cars. Utah has joined the many states allowing e-Scooter traffic. Although it permits these app-controlled scooters on its roadways, Utah does not have specific laws governing electric scooters, and every Utah city has varied, contradicting electric scooter laws governing scooters. So what laws apply to you in your city? How can you avoid a citation? What to do if you are in a scooter accident?
Let’s start with the basics: Utah has an over-arching law that is the default for scooters. Utah Traffic Code § 41-6a-1115. This law can be altered by city ordinances but it is the place to start to understand the best way to protect yourself when it comes to scooters.
What Are The LAws?
Do I need a license?
To ride a scooter, there is no requirement to have a driver’s license or driver’s permit.
Anyone under 15 years old must be under the direct supervision of a parent or guardian. There are no exceptions. This is probably the most frequently violated law concerning scooters.
Also, although you may feel like a child when you are on these scooters, actual children under 8 years old are not allowed to ride the scooters on public property. This includes sidewalks, pathways, and roadways. Do not let your children under 8 ride these scooters. If you do, you could be ticketed.
Where Can You Ride?
There are restrictions on where you can ride your scooter as well. You may feel as free as a “bird” (pun intended) while riding these scooters, but you are not free to go wherever you want. A person may not operate a motor assisted scooter (electric scooter) in the following areas:
A. in a public parking structure;
B. on public property posted as an area prohibiting skateboards;
C. on a highway consisting of a total of four or more lanes designated for regular vehicular traffic;
D. on a highway with a posted speed limit greater than 25 miles per hour;
Please know that the information above is given in generalities and that each case or claim is different. For that reason, if you have been in an accident, it is highly recommended that you speak with a qualified attorney.
What about roads with a change in speed limits?
A great example of two conflicting streets is in St. George -The main street that runs through the city, where the majority of the scooters are located, is called St. George Boulevard. Electric scooter laws are in place to protect you but it’s important to survey your surroundings. That road has a speed limit of 30mph and runs east to west. However, actual Main Street in St. George, which has hundreds of storefronts, has a speed limit of 25mph. Main Street runs north to south and crosses with St. George Boulevard. So, if you are looking to ride a scooter in St. George, you may find yourself picking up your scooter on the Boulevard and dropping it off on Main Street. That means that you should start off riding on the sidewalk when on St. George Blvd, then switch to riding on the roadway when on Main St. This can be confusing and different laws apply for sidewalk travel vs. roadway travel. To add to the confusion, some cities do not allow scooters to ride on the sidewalks at all.
For these confusing and conflicting laws remember this: If you ride the battery-powered scooter on the roadway, you should comply with the laws that govern the travel of motorcycles and cars. (Of course, do not ride on the roadway if the speed limit is over 25mph.) This means that you must signal when turning, stop at stoplights, stop at crosswalks, and stop behind traffic.
Can I Ride on The Sidewalk?
If you ride the electric scooter on the sidewalk, you must comply with pedestrian laws. Primarily, this means that you cannot travel at an unreasonable speed. You should slow down when coming to an intersection, groups of people, and parking lots. This also means that you can only cross the street when the pedestrian “walk” sign is lit, you must stop at stop signs, and you should only cross at crosswalks.
Overall, there are a lot of pitfalls and loopholes when dealing with these electric scooters. If you have been in a scooter accident, don’t rely on opinion alone. Find a personal injury attorney that knows the electric scooter laws.
One Client’s Story
Take a moment to hear from one of our valued clients as he shares his experience with Mcmullin Injury Law following his scooter accident. Victor recounts how Mcmullin Injury Law provided the essential support he and his wife required when confronted with substantial medical expenses in the aftermath of the accident. They decided to enlist the services of an attorney to advocate for his case.
VICTOR ALLEN, HURRICANE, UT
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