PennDOT: Motorized Scooters Illegal On Roads
As the weather changes, more and more people take to the streets for their recreational activities. With kids heading outdoors, parents should take a few precautions.
Because safety on area roads is a priority, PennDOT advises parents that it is illegal to operate motorized scooters on roads or walkways in Pennsylvania.
It is also dangerous. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, there were 1,330 emergency room-treated injuries related to motorized scooters in 1999. In 2000, the number of reported injuries climbed to 4,390. In the first nine months of 2001, the last time CPSC published injuries associated with motor scooters, there were 2,870 injuries.
The commission was also aware of three deaths, including an 11-year-old, Pennsylvania boy who crashed into a truck while riding his motorized scooter.
Kids aren't aware of driving laws - what rules to obey - they don't have the experience, maturity or understanding, said Ron Bonacci, PennDOT's traffic engineer. Kids don't have the experience to exercise basic safety concerns. When they err, they can hurt themselves or others.
Motorized scooters are classified as motor vehicles, according to the state's vehicle code, which requires registration, license plates and inspection. However, these scooters can not pass inspection safety standards because they lack basic safety features that are designed to protect the operator.
In addition, the driver must possess a valid driver's license. The only place to legally operate these motorized scooters without violating PennDOT guidelines is on one's own property. The fines for violators can range from $25 to $200 dollars. Operators should always wear a helmet.
Motorized scooters, which are typically gas or electric powered, closely resemble a skateboard with handlebars. Some brands also include seats. The rider stands on the platform holds onto the handlebars and controls the power of the engine by hand. The scooters can reach speeds of up to 10 to 30 mph.
Hanka Zubko contributes and publishes news editorial to http://www.the-scooters-report.com.
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