Parents who are considering purchasing a motorized scooter for their children need to research the legality of these devices before making the investment.
Generally parents assume that if it is legal for a store to sell an item it is legal for their children to use the item sold to them. The fact is that most motorized scooters are not legal to operate on Michigan streets; and because they are a motor vehicle they cannot be driven on sidewalks.
A motorized scooter, while not specifically defined in the Michigan Vehicle Code, does fall under the definition of a "moped" (MCL.257.32b). Mopeds are required to have certain equipment such as a headlight, seat, horn, muffler, and brakes on each wheel in order to be legally operated on the roadways. In addition, the operator must have an operators/chauffeurs license and the vehicle must be registered with the Secretary of State and display a valid registration sticker. Finally, a person operating a moped must wear an approved crash helmet if they are under 19 years of age.
Because motorized scooters are not equipped with the required equipment they cannot be legally driven on the roadway.
Also, by definition, they are a motor vehicle and therefore cannot be driven on a sidewalk constructed for use by pedestrians. If you have any questions concerning the legality of riding a motorized scooter, please call the Tecumseh Police Department at 517-423-7494.