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#1 2008-11-14 12:34:04

dougmc
Administrator
Registered: 2008-06-01
Posts: 549

Re: Assisted Bicycle Laws In Texas

Wow, you were busy last night!  Lots of advertising done ...
(I'd suggest that you're reaching people who aren't likely to become customers when you spam here, but so be it ...)

As for your (implied) legal analysis, TXDPS seems to agree with you --

   http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/msb/pages/electric.htm         

(You ought to just cite them rather than quoting bits of the law.)  Though the law itself isn't quite so clear.  But assuming that the word `title' in 551.352.e refers to the entire `Texas Transportation Code', it would indeed seem that `motor assisted cycles' don't need to be registered, or insured, or have plates, etc. -- even if they also meet the definition of a moped (which they generally do.)  I'm also assuming that we can pretend that a bicycle with a motor has a `deck' at all -- generally a deck is something you can walk or stand on, but a bicycle has no such structure.  But it does generally have something to let you sit -- it's just not a deck.

But there's a big restrictions here.  In particular, this one -- `A neighborhood electric vehicle or motor assisted scooter may be operated only on a street or highway for which the posted speed limit is 35 miles per hour or less.'  If you're restricted to roads with 35 mph or lower speed limits, you can't get very far.  For example, I live near Beckett and Convict Hill.  Both have sections with speed limits of 40 -- off limits for motor assisted cycles.  Similarly, Davis, William Cannon, Mopac, Slaughter -- all have a speed limit too high to ride your scooter on.  Some have sidewalks or bike lanes (which would give you a way to ride on them), some don't.  So at least around here, a motor assisted scooter would just be a toy -- I couldn't even leave the neighborhood.  Unless turning the engine off lets you legally turn it into a bicycle (is it still a motor assisted scooter if the motor is off and the operator is pedaling instead?)  Bicycles have no such restriction.

Seems to me an electric bicycle is a lot more legally appealing -- all of the legal benefits of a bicycle, with no additional restrictions, unlike your motor assisted scooter.

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