Mobility scooters are a common sight here on the streets and often a traffic hazard for many reasons. Our sidewalks and streets are pitted, potholed and uneven; we have a high population of disabled people; many of our streets are narrow and have parking along both sides. All of these situations present problems for both the drivers of the scooters and automobile drivers.
After narrowly missing someone on a scooter several days ago, I found myself asking the question, “What are the rules of the road for these mobility scooters? Do they follow pedestrian rules, automobile rules, or bicycle rules?”
Louisiana Law for Mobility Scooters
The state of Louisiana has plenty of strange laws, including special regulations for mobility scooters. Perhaps you will be as surprised as I was to learn that, according to the Louisiana State Police, gas or electric scooters with engines under 50cc (even Vespas!) do not meet the safety-equipment requirements for registration. This means that these vehicles cannot be legally driven on Louisiana roads! If a person is found operating a scooter on a public roadway or the shoulder of a public roadway, that person can be ticketed.
However, there are general rules governing the use of mobility scooters. They are generally treated as pedestrians. That means mobility scooters can be used on sidewalks but can use road surfaces if there are no sidewalks or if those sidewalks are unsafe. Mobility scooters should not use bicycle lanes and should only cross roads at intersections or crosswalks. They should abide by traffic lights. Mobility scooter users should have safety lights or reflectors if travelling at night.
So, if you’re a driver attempting to safely traverse a street along with a mobility scooter, you might use these rules to predict what the scooter driver will do. And, be particularly careful in the French Quarter, where there are self-guided tours for tourists using mobility scooters! Only in Louisiana!
Contact Us for Car Accidents Involving Mobility Scooters
If you have been in a car accident with a mobility scooter, please contact the personal injury attorneys at Morris Bart, LLC Attorneys at Law today. We offer a free case evaluation with our personal injury attorneys, who will review the details of your case and advise you on the best approach to getting the compensation you deserve for your accident injury.