Are Electric Skateboards Illegal? Regulations & Laws

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Electric skateboards are still largely illegal in the United States. The Federal Government has yet to pass any laws that approve or deny the use of electric skateboards, leaving the regulation up to state and local governments. As of now, most states have not created legislation specific to electric skateboard use, so technically they are illegal under existing federal law.

However, some local governments have taken it upon themselves to create their own rulings about electric skateboards. There are a few states in which electric skateboarding is currently legal, as well as two big states where using an electric skateboard, is undeniably illegal.

Electric skateboard owners and potential buyers alike need to stay up-to-date on any new legislation concerning electric skateboards. Since technology advances rapidly while governmental regulation lags, more state laws will soon catch up with electric skateboarder needs. In the meantime, riders should always research their local regulations before hitting the road on an electric skateboard.

Are Electric Skateboards Illegal

Are Electric Skateboards Illegal in California?

Electric skateboards are legal in California, but with a few rules that riders must follow. You must be 16 years or older to ride an electric skateboard and you must wear a helmet at all times. Furthermore, you cannot ride your board if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

As for speed limits, your electric skateboard can’t travel faster than 20 mph, while on public property it has to remain under 15 mph. Roads with a speed limit of over 35mph aren’t allowed – highways aren’t allowed either.

Finally, when riding at night make sure your electric board is equipped with a front white light, rear red reflector, and yellow reflectors on the sides (which can be attached to either the rider or your electric board). So long as riders follow these guidelines they are good to go!

Are Electric Skateboards Illegal in Florida?

Using electric skateboards is prohibited in Florida. According to Florida law, a motor vehicle is defined as any automobile, motorcycle, truck, trailer, or other vehicle used to transport persons or property that is propelled by power other than muscular power.

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Since electric skateboards fit this definition–and because they cannot be registered due to safety and design requirements–they are not legal for use in public areas.

This means that electric skateboard riders in Florida must find a private area if they wish to ride legally. Electric skateboards are not allowed to be operated on footpaths or in bike lanes since these are public places.

Are Electric Skateboards Illegal in Michigan?

Michigan has now legalized the use of electric skateboards. After passing House Bill 5391, electric skaters can now ride around just like cyclists.

The rules that apply to cyclists also apply to electric skateboard riders: you can only ride on roads with a speed limit below 25 mph, and your maximum speed cannot exceed that limit. Furthermore, electric skateboards are limited to 2,500W of power and must not carry more than one rider.

Are Electric Skateboards Illegal in New York?

Electric skateboards are currently illegal in the state of New York. This news has caused a massive outcry from the public, yet the government has made no effort to reconsider its ban on this type of transportation.

Many people are wondering if electric skateboards will ever be legal in New York. While there is no definitive answer as of yet, it is clear that the current laws do not support their use.

Are Electric Skateboards Illegal in Texas?

Although there is no specific classification for electric skateboards in the state, it could be argued that they would fall under the legal definition of a motor-assisted scooter.

This means that electric skateboards can be legally ridden on the roads of Texas but under certain conditions such as a speed limit of 35mph or less and being able to ride in a separate bicycle lane or on the sidewalk.

It’s important to remember that electric skateboard laws vary from place to place, so if a law enforcement officer asks you to stop riding yours, it’s best to listen.

What to Do If the Police Catches You Electric Skateboarding

If you’re caught by the police while electric skateboarding, it’s important to be as stealthy as possible and avoid unnecessary trouble. Knowing what to do can help you make sure that any potential encounters with cops are avoided.

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When riding, try to maintain a moderate speed. If you see a policeman, you may want to hide your remote control in your backhand and kick-push your board like ordinary longboarders instead of relying on the electric motor. Additionally, opt for a half-lid helmet rather than a full-lid one which will stick out more and draw more attention from law enforcement.

Remember that it is also best to ride an electric skateboard in locations where there are fewer police officers such as towns outside of bigger cities or capitals. Being aware of this can ensure that you stay safe when e-skating so that encounters with law enforcement can be avoided altogether.

Penalties for Skateboarding Law Violations

When it comes to penalties for skateboarding law violations, it largely depends on the state and how the police officer classifies the charge. Typically, when your e-skating laws are broken, you will either receive a warning, a fine, or in more serious cases an arrest charge.

For less serious offenses such as breaking administrative regulations or traffic rules, your penalty may be classified as an ‘infraction’ which is not considered a criminal offense therefore incarceration is highly unlikely. More serious offenses that would fall under misdemeanors such as theft or vandalism are punishable by fines and jail time.

Fortunately, skateboarding violations rarely result in misdemeanors so don’t let that scare you too much! Regardless of what violation you’re being charged for it’s best to seek legal advice from a professional lawyer.

FAQs

Is an Electric Skateboard Safe?

With the right safety gear and proper riding proficiency, electric skateboards are generally safe to use; however, the quality of your e-board is also an important factor that can affect your overall safety.

Why E-Boards Are So Dangerous?

Electric skateboards or longboards appear to be toys but are as powerful and fast as a small electric car. The speed and acceleration of an e-board in beginner mode can even surprise an inexperienced user.

Do I need a license to ride an electric skateboard?

In some regions, yes. Certain areas require riders to have a valid driver’s license or permit to operate motorized devices like electric skateboards on public roads. Others may have age restrictions or require registration.

Can I ride an electric skateboard in bike lanes or designated pathways?

Regulations differ by location. Some regions permit electric skateboard use in bike lanes or designated paths, while others prohibit it. It’s crucial to know local laws to determine where you can legally ride.

Are there speed limits for electric skateboards?

Yes, some jurisdictions impose speed limits for electric skateboards. These limits can vary widely, ranging from 15 to 25 mph (24 to 40 km/h) in many areas. Always adhere to local speed regulations.

Are electric skateboards allowed on public transportation or in public spaces?

Rules regarding electric skateboard use on public transportation and in public spaces differ. In some areas, they might be allowed on trains or buses, while in others, they’re restricted. Always check specific guidelines for each mode of transport or public area.

Do I need safety gear while riding an electric skateboard?

It’s highly recommended. Safety gear such as helmets, pads, and reflective clothing might be legally mandated in certain areas. Even where not required by law, wearing safety gear is crucial for personal protection while riding electric skateboards.

Conclusion

Electric skateboards are legal in some places and illegal in others. It’s important to check your local laws before you decide to buy one. Even if they’re allowed, you may still want to take certain precautions, such as helmets, knee pads, and elbow pads while using the device.

No matter what regulations are in effect, always exercise caution and be aware of your surroundings when using an electric skateboard. Safety comes first! So buckle up and enjoy the ride!

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Joseph E. Bogle

This is Joseph E. Bogle, the founder and lead writer of SkateToScoot.com, an enthusiast of skating for over a decade. I'm an aggressive skater and certified skating coach, dedicated to sharing his knowledge and passion for skating with others through his blog. With my unique combination of personal experience and professional expertise, SkateToScoot.com is a valuable resource for skaters of all levels, from beginners to advanced athletes.