Please take notice that, in the City of Madison Heights, a Motorized Scooter, herinafter collectively referred to as a "Scooter," whether electric or gasoline powered, may only be operated on private property and it is illegal for anyone to operate a scooter on public highways, streets, sidewalks or bike paths ("Public Property) in the city and failure to obey this law will subject the operator to traffic violations (both criminal and civil) and result in the impoundment of the scooter by a law enforcement officer. This prohibition excludes a properly equipped and operated Moped, as that term is defined in Michigan Compiled Law ("MCL") 257.32b et seq.
Since most scooters fail to meet the requirements for a properly equipped moped, they are prohibited from being operated on public highways, streets, sidewalks oar bike paths in the city.
Conditions for Motorized Scooters
Michigan Law defines a moped as a “a 2- or 3-wheeled vehicle which is equipped with a motor that does not exceed 50 cubic centimeters piston displacement, produces 2.0 brake horsepower or less, and cannot propel the vehicle at a speed greater than 30 miles per hour on a level surface. The power drive system shall not require the operator to shift gears (MCLA 257.32b
). A scooter fits within this definition of a moped therefore; all laws pertaining to moped also pertain to scooters.
- For scooters to be operated legally on public streets, the operator “shall not ride other than upon and astride a permanent and regular seat attached to that vehicle.” MCLA 257.658a. Most scooters are not equipped with seats and cannot be legally driven on a public street.
- Michigan Law also requires that a scooters have “at least one and not more than two head lamps” located not more than 54 inches nor less than 24 inches above the level surface upon which the vehicle stands (MCLA 257.685b) and one rear stop light (MCLA 257.697). Most scooters do not have lights.
- To operate a scooter, the driver must either have a valid driver's license or be 15 years old and have a special restricted license to operate a moped (MCLA 257.312a2).
- A scooter does not require insurance, however it must be registered with the Secretary of State and it must display a decal indicating the vehicle is registered (MCLA 257.801(e)).
- A scooter may not be operated on sidewalks (MCLA 257.660(6)) or on bike paths or within a City park (MCLA 750.419).
- A horn is required on a scooter (MCLA 257.706).
Currently, scooter operators probably have no choice but to confine their scooter riding to private property. Scooters fit within the definition of a moped; therefore they must meet the legal criteria for a moped, however most scooters fail to meet the criteria because they are not designed with seats, lights, or horns. Be advised
that if you purchase a scooter that does not meet all of the legal requirements
of a moped you may not operate that vehicle on a public property street or sidewalk. Failure to obey these laws
will subject you to traffic violations (misdemeanor and civil infractions) and impoundment of the scooter by a law enforcement officer.
If you have further questions
please contact the Madison Heights Police Department and ask to speak to a road supervisor regarding scooters. (248-585-2100)