If you’re considering riding an electric scooter in California, it’s important that you know the laws first. E-scooters are becoming increasingly popular, but there are some important regulations you must follow. In this blog post, I will discuss 10 of the most important E-scooter laws in California.
We will also provide information on electric scooter helmet laws and other safety precautions you should take while riding. Let’s get started!
10 Electric Scooter Laws You Must Know Before Riding in California!
Helmets must be worn by minors (California Vehicle Code 21235)
All riders under the age of 18 must wear a helmet while riding an electric scooter. Electric scooters are considered “wheeled recreational vehicles” under California law, and helmets are required for all wheeled recreational vehicles. The only exception to this rule is if the rider has a medical condition that prevents them from wearing a helmet.
Quote California Vehicle code#21235 “No person shall operate a wheeled recreational device upon a street, bikeway, or any other public bicycle path or trail unless that person is wearing a properly fitted and fastened bicycle helmet.”
Bicyclists must ride on the bicycle lanes(California Vehicle Code 21235)
Electric scooters must be ridden in the bicycle lane when one is available. If there is no bicycle lane, you must ride as close to the right side of the road as possible. Electric scooters are not allowed on sidewalks unless specifically permitted by a local ordinance.
Pedestrians must be given the right of way(California Vehicle Code 21950)
Electric scooters must yield to pedestrians at all times. You must give them the right of way when crossing sidewalks and intersections. You should also use caution when passing pedestrians, as they may not expect a scooter. However, if there is a separate lane for e-scooters, you have the right of way over pedestrians.
Use proper hand signals(California Vehicle Code 22106)
Many electric scooters come with sideway indicators, but they’re not as visible as a car’s turn signals. When turning, you must use the proper hand signal. For a left turn, extend your left arm straight out. For a right turn, extend your left arm out and bend it up at the elbow so that your hand is pointing up.
You should also use hand signals when stopping or slowing down.
When stopping or changing lanes, you should use hand signals as well. Electric scooters must have a front and rear light and reflectors so that you are visible to others at night.
Quote California Vehicle Code#22106: “All required turning movements shall be signaled by either the hand and arm or signal lamps for at least the last 100 feet traveled by the vehicle before turning. The signal must indicate the intention to turn, change lanes, or stop.”
You can go up to 15 mph(CVC 22411)
The electric scooter comes with various speed limits. However, the maximum speed limit for all scooters is 15 mph in California. There are certain areas where the speed limit may be lower, so make sure to check signs before riding. In case of violation, you may have a fine ticket of $250. So, next time you’re out for a ride, make sure to keep an eye on your speed!
Read to know the best-rated electric scooter for adults.
Riding while intoxicated is illegal(California Vehicle Code 23152)
Just like cars, it is illegal to operate a scooter while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If you are caught riding while intoxicated, you could face DUI charges. Electric scooters are considered “vehicles” under California law, and DUI laws apply to all vehicles.
Observe all road markings and signals(California Vehicle Code 21461)
All e-scooter riders must obey traffic signals and road markings. This includes stop signs, yield signs, and red lights. Electric scooters are not allowed to ride on freeways or highways. All riders must be cautious at all times. This includes being aware of your surroundings and obeying all traffic laws.
Motorized vehicles include e-scooters(CVC 21221)
As of January 2019, electric scooters will be considered “motorized vehicles” under California law. This means that all the rules that apply to cars and motorcycles also apply to electric scooters. This includes things like getting a driver’s license, registering your scooter, and obeying all traffic laws. However, unlike other motorized vehicles, you don’t need insurance to ride an electric scooter.
Electric scooter parking(CVC 22507.11)
You can park your electric scooter on the street as long as you follow all the parking rules that apply to cars. This means not parking in handicap spots, fire lanes, or other areas where you might block traffic. You also shouldn’t park your scooter in a way that it blocks pedestrian walkways or handicap ramps.
When parking your scooter, make sure to check for signs that might have special rules for scooters. Some cities have designated parking areas for scooters, and some don’t allow scooters on the sidewalk at all.
The most secure areas for parking electric scooters are bus stops, bike racks, or in commercial loading zones with the front wheel turned so it can’t roll away.
What does CVC 22507.11 say? “A person shall not park a bicycle, or leave it lying on its side on any sidewalk, roadway, or bikeway, or in any ditch or drainage structure adjacent to a roadway or bikeway.”
Liability for electric scooter accidents
You may be liable for damages if you’re involved in an accident while riding an electric scooter. This means that if you cause damage to someone else’s property or if you injure someone, you may have to pay for the damages. In some cases, your insurance company may cover the damages, but it’s always a good idea to check with your insurer before riding.
There are some cases where scooter malfunctions and users file cases against manufacturers, but in the user agreement, they did sign a waiver of personal injury.
Even though you may be held liable for damages in an accident, there are some situations where you will not be held responsible. For example, you may not be held liable if someone else’s negligence caused the accident or the scooter malfunctioned.
It’s always a good idea to consult with an attorney if you’re involved in an accident so that you can understand your rights and responsibilities.
Riding an electric scooter can be a fun and convenient way to get around, but it’s important to know the law before you ride. Electric scooters are subject to the same rules and regulations as cars and motorcycles, so make sure you’re familiar with the law before you hit the road. And always remember to stay safe and ride responsibly!