California Vehicle Code 21235 requires all riders of e-scooters have either a valid state driver’s license or an instruction permit. So while a license is required, the law allows an e-scooter rider to ride with a learner’s permit which can be obtained in California at age 15 and a half.
Definition of an E-Scooter
The law treats many vehicles differently, so it’s good to know exactly what constitutes an e-scooter under the law. CVC 407.5 defines:
“A ‘motorized scooter’ is any two-wheeled device that has handlebars, has a floorboard that is designed to be stood upon when riding, and is powered by an electric motor. This device may also have a driver seat that does not interfere with the ability of the rider to stand and ride and may also be designed to be powered by human propulsion. For purposes of this section, a motorcycle, as defined in Section 400, a motor-driven cycle, as defined in Section 405, or a motorized bicycle or moped, as defined in Section 406, is not a motorized scooter.”
So basically, an e-scooter is just like you thought one would be (although some can have a seat) and it’s not a moped, motorized bicycle or a motorcycle.
Where Can you Ride?
You can ride in bike lanes and in the road on the right-hand side of the right lane on any road that is 25 mph or lower. Riding on sidewalks is not permitted unless a local rule allows it. E-scooters can be ridden on most bike trails and shared-use paths, however, these rules can change for local parks, etc., so check in your area before you head out.
Los Angeles Bicycle Law
At Los Angeles Bicycle Law, we concentrate our practice solely on bicyclists who have been injured as a result of the carelessness and negligence of others. We’re dedicated and effective Los Angeles bicycle accident lawyers. If you were injured in a bicycle accident in or around Los Angeles or anywhere else in Southern California, contact us right away for a confidential free consultation and case review.