In recent years, motorized scooters have become a popular mode of transportation. These scooters are routinely used by commuters looking for a more affordable and less congested way to get through busy city streets. Unfortunately, the trend of motorized scooters has grown faster than the laws that pertain to their use.
Since it can be difficult for a layperson to understand the new and changing laws regarding scooter use and scooter accidents, the personal injury lawyers at Chanfrau & Chanfrau are here to help. Here, we provide a brief explanation of scooter accident laws in Florida and the Daytona Beach, FL, area.
What Is a Motorized Scooter?
Motorized scooters are personal, single-rider motor vehicles that travel at limited speed. Specifically, Florida law defines a motorized scooter as:
Any vehicle or micromobility device that is powered by a motor with or without a seat or saddle for the use of the rider, which is designed to travel on not more than three wheels, and which is not capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed greater than 20 miles per hour on level ground.
There are several classes of vehicles that may be described as scooters under Florida law, including:
- Two- or three-wheeled vehicle (with or without a seat) that looks like a classic children’s scooter
- Motorized Segway style scooter
- Motorized hoverboard
- Miniature motorcycle
- Mobility scooter
Introduction of New Laws
In the past, Florida has not had very specific laws regarding the use of motorized scooters. The general rule was that motorized scooters had to be operated on sidewalks. As the use of motorized scooters grows across Daytona Beach and other Florida counties, the state is attempting to make regulations clearer and more in line with the type of scooters being used today.
Florida Politics reports that two new laws have recently cleared the Senate Infrastructure & Security Committee by unanimous vote. These laws essentially would change the definition of a motorized scooter so that they could be operated on city streets. Additionally, these laws would leave it up to cities and counties to control scooter rentals in their jurisdiction, and regulate the use of scooters on any of the sidewalks or streets within their jurisdiction.
Countywide Scooter Laws
Local cities and counties have already begun to make their own laws regarding the use of motorized scooters, but the rules vary from one county to another. Some counties have opted to ban the use of motorized scooters altogether. In other counties, they have chosen to stick with more traditional laws that limit the use of motorized scooters to sidewalks. Finally, there are those that allow the use of motorized scooters on sidewalks, within bike lanes, and on city streets (but not on the highway).
Working with an Attorney
Since scooter laws vary across counties, it is important that anyone who has been injured in a motorized scooter accident work with an attorney who understands these laws. At Chanfrau & Chanfrau, our lawyers rely on current laws and legally set precedents to determine liability in a scooter accident. We will consider whether or not the scooter was being operated legally at the time of the accident and what it was that ultimately caused the accident so that injury victims can be justly awarded accident damages.
If you have been injured in a motorized scooter accident in Daytona Beach or a surrounding county, the personal injury attorneys at Chanfrau & Chanfrau can help you seek financial compensation for accident damages. To discuss the details of your case and learn more about your legal options, schedule a personal consultation with one of our lawyers by calling (866) 610-0653.