The worldwide craze for hoverboards is raising more eyebrows in regards to the safety of the users as well as other road users.
This has forced strict measures, laws, and regulations to be enforced in order to maintain the sanity of our roads. More people are inclined to invest in hoverboards for the fact that they are fun, facilitate easy mobility and are considered trendy.
However, before investing this two-wheel mobile, ask yourself “are hoverboards illegal in the state that I live in?”
Are Hoverboards Illegal in New York?
States such as New York have banned the use of hoverboards due to the fact that they are considered motor vehicles. According to New York City, any device with wheels and is powered by an electric or a gasoline motor and is able to propel itself without human intervention is a motor vehicle.
The state has had to ban the use of hoverboards in public places since these motor vehicles cannot be registered with the Department of Motor Vehicles.
When asked to comment on the strict laws on the use of hoverboards on roads, a New York hoverboard seller said that “Hoverboards are here to stay.
This is an invention that has been geared to accommodate everybody regardless of their age and gender and people love it. No matter what laws they enforce, they cannot stop the worldwide use of hoverboards.”
Can I Ride My Hoverboard in the UK?
The UK, on the other hand, has ruled against riding a hoverboard on pavements and Public roads in Britain.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) insists that motorized scooters should only be used on private property citing that they are too dangerous to be ridden in public. Initially, The CPS guidance was issued for motorized scooters with handlebars then later changed it to include all hoverboards.
Hoverboards are also illegal to ride on public roads as they are not approved by the British or European road legal test schemes.
Under section 72 of the highway act, it is illegal to ride hoverboards on the pavements in Wales and England. The same rule applies to the north of the border cited under section 129 of the roads Act 1984.
One can only ride a self-balancing scooter on one’s or another person’s private property with their permission, states the CPS guidance. The department for transport advises all hoverboard users to ensure that they wear safety clothing at all times when riding this device.
Does Canada Allow Hoverboard Users to Ride them in Public Places?
In Toronto, Canada, riding a hoverboard on the sidewalks is not allowed. This is because they are considered motor vehicles.
The by-laws in Toronto do not allow the use of motorized vehicles on the sidewalks with an exception for disabled people who need them to get around. According to Ontario’s Highway Traffic Act, these motorized devices do not qualify as motor vehicles hence not allowed on the roads.
The Ministry of Transportation says that it is up to the Municipalities to determine whether they’re allowed on the sidewalks or not.
On the other hand, Toronto’s Capano says that these motorized gadgets are allowed to be used on private property only and not on sidewalks, bike lanes, bike paths, parks and so on. However, the police have not been asked to enforce the law yet. Unless a hoverboard user has caused harm or hit a fellow pedestrian, the police will not actively approach a hoverboard rider.
This makes it unclear of what the fines and charges of illegal hovering will be in case a pedestrian is hit or injured by a hoverboard user. Whenever a new device is introduced to the market, the law has to take its time to see whether these things will be a vice to the community first.
On the other hand, the state might rush to enforce a law on an invention that will not last anyway hence unnecessary, for instance, Google Glass.
Has Florida Enforced Any Laws Regarding the Use of Hoverboards?
If most states are adamant about the riding of hoverboards in such big cities and states, one is left to wonder “Where else can I freely ride
my hoverboard on public places without interfering with the law?” Florida might be a safe place to do so. This state has not released any law in regards to the use of self-balancing scooters. This means that you can comfortably ride your mobile device in this sun city. However, it is important to note that the University of Central Florida (UCF) has banned the use of electric and battery operated hoverboards on campus.
In fact, UCF students are not allowed to ride, store, park or charge their hoverboards within campus property.
As much as Florida is a safe state to ride your hoverboard, one should note that the regulations change over time. It is therefore advisable to check with the authorities every now and then to see whether any changes have been made.
The strict laws and measured on hoverboards, unlike other trendy devices, are because they pose risk to the user and pedestrians.
The fact that children and young adults use then forces the hand of the law to execute these rules for the safety of everyone. Before hopping on one, ensure that you are aware of the laws and regulations regarding their use.