Legislation Listing

Discussion in 'Laws, Legislation & Emissions' started by loquin, Sep 5, 2008.

  1. loquin

    loquin Active Member

    I've spent some time accumulating the statutes, by state (and, at least one Canadian province,) of everything I could find which deals with motorized bicycles.

    In some states, they're handled as bicycles, in some as 'motorized bicycles,' in some, as mopeds, in some, as 'pedalcycles,' in some as 'motor-driven cycles,' and in some, as motorcycles. And, some states don't have anything that I could find. In a few, you could possibly treat a motorized bike as a 'slow-moving vehicle.' Especially if you're carrying around a bag of natural fertilizer ... :)

    I tried to determine, from the statutes, how motorized bicycles would be interpreted by the state. I COULD BE WRONG! So, don't interpret what I've done as gospel. Think of it as a starting point for you to locate information that you may be able to use.

    The format is:
    ST State Name

    Statute Identifier
    Statute Description
    ‚óŹ Hyperlink to the online source

    The list is here, as a series of web pages, with navigation links at the bottom of each page.

    I've also saved the entire list as a PDF file, but, some of the links are garbled. (you can highlight & copy the link, then paste it into your browser if it's coming up as a bad link. Note that when you do, at the position of the garbled character, there's an extra space in what was pasted that needs to be removed.) The web page link doesn't have that issue - only the PDF file.

    As you find new links, PLEASE post them in the Legislative Listing Updates forum. That way, until I get to updating the Legislative Listings info, there's a permanent link to the updates/new laws in one location.

    DISCLAIMER: These lists should NOT be construed as any form of legal advise or legal authority - they are just links to information that may be of use to you - a starting point, if you will, to educate yourself on your local laws regarding motorized bicycles. If you have need of legal advise, contact a local attorney.
    Last edited: May 16, 2011

  2. mralaska

    mralaska Member

    The way I am reading the laws, in NH a motorized bicycle is a motor vehicle only as it applies to requiring a valid driver license to operate it. If it has over 5 hp it then it appears to become a motorcycle but it seems motor assisted bicycles have quite a bit of latitude. You can also register it as a moped, in which case you can get a special license to operate but you are limited to 2 hp, 50cc, the ability not to exceed 30mph in one mile, and cannot require the use of shifting gears.

    In short; NH would read Yes if less than 5hp, valid DL required with any powered assist (according to my layman's interpretation of the laws)

    The above is my creative interpretation of the regulations after spending some time agonizing over the regs. The rules are vague enough there seems to be some confusion even among registry officials. A lot of people think we are limited to 50cc but I think the moped regulations are muddying the waters a bit more.


    I did a fifty mile jaunt today through several of my neighboring towns and had several close encounters with the police. A couple of them waved, a few others gave me a real hard once over, but none of them pulled me over. I have a feeling some of them will be going over the books tonight to see if they should have pulled me over. I talked to a guy at the local gossip corner who told me about a guy in my town that put a chainsaw powered friction drive on his bike and got stopped for doing 45 in a 25 but that was the only ticket issued.
  3. SirJakesus

    SirJakesus Guest

    I've had no negative police encounters. I'm either totally ignored by them or they wave and smile. I'd say thats a pretty good indication of their legality in this state. I have registered and non-registered MB's. Not a problem with either of them.
  4. VTBikeman

    VTBikeman Member

    Anyone have stats on the # of accidents motored bikes are involve in?
    VT Bike man
  5. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    95%? Almost everybody's had to of had some kinda accident. Just how serious of an accident are you looking for? (just being rhetorical, i'd have no clue either way)
  6. VTBikeman

    VTBikeman Member

    I haven't had one and I'm not planning on it, but no one does.
    Any accident that involves personal injury or cause property damage would count. I want to get a feel for how safely people ride and whether the motorized bike really needs to be looked at as a moped requiring insurance or not.
    I want to talk to our state senator about the insurance requirements and I would like to know where states get their information to require it.
    I still don't see these as any more dangerous than a bicycle. but I want to make a case for that.
  7. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    Check out the accident thread. Typically seems to be taking your eyes off the road, just like any vehicle. I don't know of too many serious accidents from MBs, tho. My accident with a non-motorized bicycle was worse than any accident I've seen yet. There was another guy who also just posted about how he didn't leave enough room for himself on the shoulder, and another car hit him. Seeing enough road ahead of you (which means a couple feet on the right-hand side, too!), ESPECIALLY at nighttime, should ensure a safe return home. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't still be a lil' paranoid.

    As for the legislation thing, there's a couple threads where we try to come up with a list of states that don't define motorized bicycles, and then have this entire site email/snail mail/call/etc. the "slow" states in the same week and get them to do something quickly. Here's a few of those threads, which one of them you're also in (excellent PDF loquin!):

  8. machiasmort

    machiasmort Active Member


    LOL, "Especially if you're carrying around a bag of natural fertilizer"... Technical Support here in NY (DMV) State Capitol, told me it was illegal to put a motor on a bike period! When I asked what section of Law I was in violation of??? They clammed right up!!!

    I might just call and ask, If I had a bag of manure over my shoulder and it had a hole in the corner??? Would I be in violation of pooper scooper laws on my ten speed??? What if I had my hair in a poney tail??? LOL This is funny but not really. These people want to govern with laws written in the 1910's. In NY, I could make my own motorcycle from scratch, my own car from scratch, but not a simple moped. They said I'd have to be on a list of registered moped manufacturer's to gain NY registration!
  9. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    Has this been completed for a while?

    I was going to start looking stuff up, but it seems that Loquin has done 99.7% of it all. Or maybe it was done before, but its purpose wasn't to accomplish answering a simple yes or no to each state's question of legality??

    Some people might not see the PDF link above easy enough.... but it should answer most n00b questions, and it's here: http://www.oquin.com/msc/MB_Statutes.pdf

    I'd still try to double check those laws that Loquin lists. It at least makes it a lot easier to find the traffic sections which are most relevant to your questions.
  10. robert van zee

    robert van zee New Member

    fremont /newark ca. most of the cop are ***.... ! but so far so good ! the law ,lic. 30 mph ,but who countintg ,when i lived in S.F. no one even gave it a secoend thought ! robert van zee/rocket-man
  11. domino

    domino New Member

    Lou you are the man. The info you have assembled here has made life a lot easier for me. YOU DID ALL THE WORK! Thanks
  12. lazaruslong

    lazaruslong Member

    you might want to list this for vermont---wont help the ice guys but the electrics should smile

    Laws regulating electric bicycles and ebike in the State of Vermont
    Electric Bicycle and Ebike Regulations in the State of Vermont
    LAW ENFORCEMENT BULLETIN #03-06 issued on April 8, 2003 emphatically states that "anyone riding a low speed electric bicycle would be afforded the same rights and responsibilities of any bicyclists."
  13. A-TownTX

    A-TownTX Member

    do you know anything bout montana laws cuz the site that u got on your link wasnt very helpful and i really wasnt sure how to look.
  14. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    The link at least pointed you toward the listing of Montana Code. The link pointed to the 2005 Code, which appears to be outdated.

    Here's the 2009 Code...

    You should clearly be able to see the proper section with a little skimming -- Motor Vehicles...

    First, you should ALWAYS check the definitions. ALWAYS!!

    Keep going to the definitions of "Vehicles" (Take note of the "commercial" definitions. Are you engaging in commerce when you ride your bicycle? :detective:)...

    BE SURE TO READ ALL THOSE DEFS! A lot are SIMILAR but NOT the SAME! For example...
    Ding! Ding! Ding! We have a winner!! Statute 61-8-102...

  15. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    Also, loquin...

    You could add "63-7-51. General vehicle brake equipment requirements." to the Mississippi Laws, because of subsection (2)...

    I found that jewel at the law library, in the annotated code! An attorney general's opinion suggests that since this is the only section that a "bicycle with motor attached" is mentioned, then it is clearly distinct from motorcycle and retains its identity as a bicycle. If it was intended to be a motorcycle, then there'd be no need to say both motorcycles and bicycles with motors attached need at least one brake!!
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 16, 2015
  16. loquin

    loquin Active Member

    Good point about Mississippi's law, Sparky.

    I DO have to go through the list again, and include some of the new legislation. As usual, the main issue is getting three or four more hours added to the day! Maybe I should contact our state legislators to look into that ... :idea:

    I've added an updates thread in the legislation forum, for folks to link to official sites with pertinent info on new laws, or things that I may have missed. That way, everyone can be involved in keeping the listings up to date.
    Last edited: May 16, 2011
  17. V 35

    V 35 Member

    If you don't want Cop Trouble, wear a Helmet . Over the years, my headgear has run the Gamet from Shower Caps to a Karate Helmet. I currently wear a Baseball Batter's helmet tied to my neck with a piece of rope. From a distance, it looks legal enough . A Hard Hat Liner makes a convincing helmet, offers good aerodynamics, light weight, and doesn't muss up your hairstyle. I can't find a Steeplechase helmet big enough for my fat head.
  18. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    That's, umm... That's pretty fricking brilliant!!

    I would be far more inclined to wear a batting helmet than anything else I've seen.

    Thanks! :bowdown:

  19. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    15,000 miles bike path riding including multiuse, never an accident or even near call. It comes down to common sense and safety. What should be done is post a maximum speed limit for two speeds on all bike paths, bike lanes are different. Max speed when pedestrians are present at about 8mph when not present cap it around 22 to 25. If pedestrians then should drop down. Otherwise never an issue. Most of the guys on the faster pedal bikes on bike paths and some ladies too average between about 18 to 25. Usually when they are in the mid twenties most go to bike lanes. Just post a maximum speed limit on bike paths and then open it up to all bikes. It won't matter if it is a pedal, ebike or gbike at this point because if they disobey the speed limit they get ticketed or have an accident the public will sue em. I think government is making this way more complicated then it needs be. Insurance is hard to say. You have two types of ebikes, slow ones and faster ones. Slow ones I consider the below 30mph, then there are ones that can hit the 45, thru 65 speeds and some faster than that. Hope this helps.
  20. I got the same reaction when I asked the same question. I said the same to my DMV clerk. "So I can build a motorcycle with a 1200 cc motor and apply for a vehicular registration? (Yes) But can't build a motorized bicycle and have it inspected? (Yes) Why? What law does it violate?" (Blank stair) "Here's the director of the DMV email, feel free to ask her." So I did, not holding my breath on a response.