Mississippi Law

Discussion in 'Laws, Legislation & Emissions' started by umeboshi, Jul 12, 2008.

  1. umeboshi

    umeboshi New Member

    If anyone here is a Mississippi resident and has contacted DMV, local law, or tax collector's office about the status of a motorized bike, please let me know the feedback you got on that.

    Though I have an unnatural attraction for the GEBE Subaru 35 cc kit, till I feel more secure on the disposition of local law towards this outfit, my money will stay under the mattress! :)

    Comments appreciated!

    Umeboshi うめぼし
     

  2. askantik

    askantik New Member

    I'm from Tupelo and am interested in this, too. Where are you from? By the way, one of the regulars here is from Gulfport, I think, and he may know the answer. I'm working on a electric bike myself.
     
  3. crazeehorse

    crazeehorse Member

    here's a good place to start. http://www.michie.com/mississippi/lpext.dll?f=templates&fn=main-h.htm&cp=mscode

    you will need to find out what your state definition of a bicycle, a motorized bicycle, & a moped, note. this says (code of 1972), the best thing to do is to contact tour dmv via email to check on the laws, i did ,& i keep an email as a record in case i need to show it to a clueless officer.
     
  4. crazeehorse

    crazeehorse Member

    scroll down to the general index folder (on the bottom left hand of the screen), click on the (B folder) scroll down to the (bicycles folder), also check under (title 63 motor vechicle & traffic regs.)& that should be a good starting point.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2008
  5. umeboshi

    umeboshi New Member

    Thanks Askantik... an electric bike. Sounds cool. Is there a special holding cell for those drivers?? :)

    Umeboshi
     
  6. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    Yea... the law in MS is pretty much... if it has a motor (gas or electric), it's a motorcycle. I'm trying to change the law to specifically define a motorized bicycle as something separate from a motorcycle, because a bicycle can never be registered as a motorcycle.

    According to everyone at the Dept of Public Safety & Highway Patrol couldn't answer this question, and they *guessed* that I was allowed to ride it everywhere a bicycle could go, except on the highways. Sad thing is they're not the ones who enforce the laws.

    I only had one problem with a cop, and he essentially told me he could write me 18 tickets or whatever (no reg, no ins, multiple improper equipment tix, no headlight, no helmet). My biggest problem with arguing with the cop was that I had taken my chain off to put a larger crank on... so I couldn't argue that it was a pedacycle, moped, or whatever ya wanna call it. I had to take his crud, and then he wrote me a ticket for no headlight & no helmet, which I deserved.

    The headlight charge was dropped since I showed the prosecutor proof of purchase, the helmet fine was reduced, and now I haven't had another problem since. I think if you follow the words of the wise here... stay under 20mph if your state doesn't specifically say you can travel faster, wear a helmet, & use proper lighting... you'll be alright.

    Of course a cop could mess with you if he's having a bad day, you'll prolly be OK if you go see a judge. My judge was pretty friendly, and once he found out what my tickets were for, his first question was "how fast does it go?" I told him 23 mph and started telling him about the mpgs... and then I forgot I was supposed to be arguing my way outta the ticket. I'm pretty sure if I had tried, I coulda gotten out of it (by saying it's a bicycle that cannot be registered as a motorcycle & cannot be added to any local insurance I know of, and if the cop really believed it was a motorcycle, he shoulda wrote out the other 16 tickets, but he knew that was wrong)... but I felt like I deserved to pay the no helmet charge.

    So... YMMV, but I wouldn't let a cop stop me from riding my MB. I'm a rebel, dernitall!

    If you'd like to be a legal rebel, too... I should start posting threads here to organize the MB Legalization process. We'll hit up one state's officials a week until the remaining 25 states or so that aren't MB-friendly have heard our side. It's gonna take me a couple more days to do this tho, 'cause I've been fairly busy since the Fourth. I just called Thad Cochran's office yesterday to find out how to get in touch with all the congressman from MS, and this gentleman gave me this website:
    http://billstatus.ls.state.ms.us/

    I'm gonna do a little last minute thinking and then try to figure out what states need us to whoop their state's congress into shape.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2008
  7. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    So, yea... here's the section from the MS Code that is most relevant to us... Sec. 63-3-103. Vehicles.

    (b) "Motor vehicle" means every vehicle which is self-propelled and every vehicle which is propelled by electric power obtained from overhead trolley wires, but not operated upon rails. The term "motor vehicle" shall not include electric personal assistive mobility devices.

    (c) "Motorcycle" means every motor vehicle having a saddle for the use of the rider and designed to travel on not more than three (3) wheels in contact with the ground but excluding a tractor.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 18, 2015
  8. umeboshi

    umeboshi New Member

    Thanks, Sparky, for helping the Mississippi situation. Dreading the flack from policemen is really the only thing keeping me from taking the plunge, because I really want to ride the contraption places other than my back yard! :)

    I was in the county seat today to get a tag for my son's car and I described a motorized bike to the lady and asked if it could be registered... she said, "Oh, no, we could never give a license plate to anything like that."

    I am wondering... if it cannot be registered as a motorcycle or insured, how then can someone legally give you a ticket for riding one..seems the law has a contradiction there. I'm no lawyer, but it makes sense to me.

    About the helmet fine...seems to me wearing one is an admission that's it's a motorcycle if a cop stops me. Whatcha think??

    Umeboshi
     
  9. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    That's my point.. ya can't get it registered as a motor vehicle, and ya can't get it insured (at least with the companies I've checked with).

    I *highly* doubt other MS cops are as bad as in Gulfport, so you really shouldn't have a problem, and if you do... a cop's gonna give you a warning if you're respectful (it's hard for me to say, "Yessir!" over and over again).

    The helmet issue in our state is most tricky. There is not a helmet law for regular bicycles. I face-planted on a regular bicycle and have quite a few scars on my face & arms. If I'm riding within a couple miles of my house, I tend to not wear the helmet. But if I'm going 10+ miles away... I grab the helmet. A good role model would have his helmet on at all times, even on a regular bicycle... but I'm not a good role model by any means.

    I honestly feel like if you can still pedal, no cop is gonna give you crud... but the one time I got pulled over, I couldn't get away "on foot". So... ya just gotta take your side & put up a fight or not. The best way for you to win in the fight is if you have what is required of you... headlight is required of all bicycles, less than 20mph is expected of all bicycles, and a helmet isn't required... but I don't think they could say that's an "admission" of riding a motored vehicle, just like they couldn't say a spandex bicyclist with a helmet is admitting to riding a motored vehicle.

    It all depends on the cop, the time, and most importantly... how seriously you're taking your own safety, and occasionally the safety of others.

    I'd be willing to bet you won't have any problems as long as you play your cards right, but it certainly wouldn't hurt to call everybody affiliated with transporation in your city & state. MDOT, Dept of Public Safety, Highway Patrol, local police dept, state congress & governor.

    Awareness & prevention are our best tools to gain a foothold in the MB movement.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2008
  10. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    P.S. - to askantik: Even tho the MS laws state you can't ride an electric bicycle without considering it as a "motor vehicle" by state's terms... I think you could get away with it in court (which you shouldn't ever really need to do, 'cause E-bikes are virtually silent). There is a federal law stating that if the top speed of the E-bike is 20mph, it's considered a "consumer product" instead of a vehicle that needs to be regulated.

    I think it'll be tough for you guys to find trouble as long as you're keeping safety the #1 priority... but don't let The Man stop you from fighting a good fight.
     
  11. umeboshi

    umeboshi New Member

    Thanks, Sparky, I get your point. But what I meant about the helmet is... I can just see me telling the cop who has pulled me over, "But it ain't a motorcycle." And he says, "Yeah, well why are you wearing a motorcycle helmet???" :)

    Seems to me the helmet thing cuts both ways. If I get this bike kit, I'll probably get a bicycle helmet! Catch ya later...

    Umeboshi

    ps. I'm near Jackson. I shouldn't have any trouble m-biking down to Gulfport to see your rig, non? :) :) :)
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2008
  12. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    Main thing is to [fake] pedal whenever possible and don't overdo it. You'll have bolts coming loose a lot of times if you don't use loctite, and the engine really isn't meant to be revved WOT all the time. You find the hotspot, stick with it, respect all rules of the road and The Man... and you should be good.

    You can sure come down and see my bike, but it's nothing special. I bought it pre-made from www.FiveFlagsMotorBikes.com because I wanted a folding bike, and I wanted a dual freewheeled hub... it ended up having a couple other features I'll incorporate into my first build. But that's gonna be a long time from now.

    G'luck on your endeavors!
     
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