Driving Mopeds on North Carolina Streets

Every so often, someone asks whether a person must have a driver’s license to drive a moped on a public street in this state.  The answer is no—provided that the moped satisfies the definition of that term under state law.  A moped is defined as “a vehicle that has two or three wheels, no external shifting device, and a motor that does not exceed 50 cubic centimeters piston displacement and cannot propel the vehicle at a speed greater than 30 miles per hour on a level surface.” G.S. 20-4.01(27)d1. (incorporating the definition of moped in G.S. 105-164.3).  A person who is at least 16 years old who is outfitted with a safety helmet may lawfully drive a moped on the public roadways in North Carolina without having a driver’s license or automobile liability insurance. G.S. 20-7(a1); 20-8(7); 20-140.4.  Thus, despite the fact that mopeds are motorized vehicles, they are treated more like bicycles than automobiles for purposes of the state’s motor vehicle laws. See Ben F. Loeb, Jr. and James C. Drennan, Motor Vehicle Law and The Law of Impaired Driving in North Carolina 49 (Institute of Government 2000 ed.). Indeed, a moped is not considered a “motor vehicle” under Chapter 20. G.S. 20-4.01(23).  As a result, only the rules of the road that apply to all vehicles (such as the laws prohibiting impaired driving, and requiring that vehicles be driven on the right half of the highway, stop at stop signs, and obey speed limits) govern the operation of mopeds.

Some think the state ought to tighten the rules governing the operation of mopeds. One consideration is financial.  As this news story reflects, if the operator of a moped causes an accident resulting in damage to an insured motor vehicle, the driver of the insured vehicle and his or insurance company may wind up footing the bill.  Another consideration relates to public safety.  Some view moped drivers as a more dangerous subset of the driving population at large. Surgeons and researchers at the Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte published in March 2011 this study on the influence of alcohol on moped crashes. You can probably guess the findings from the title: MOPEDS: Motorized Objects Propelling Ethanol Drinking Subjects. An analysis of records from the Carolinas Medical Center trauma database revealed a greater association between moped collisions and positive serum ethanol levels (defined as a blood alcohol concentration of 0.05 g/DL) compared with automobile and motorcycle collisions. The study also found higher BACs among the moped group as compared to the motorcycle group.  A follow-up study determined that 29 of the 65 moped operators evaluated by the hospital’s trauma service from 2007 to 2009 previously had been convicted of impaired driving. Twenty-five of these drivers had a revoked license at the time they were injured. The later study recommends re-evaluation of impaired driving and licensure laws regarding moped operation, but acknowledges the obvious question of whether legal changes would have any impact.  After all, driving a moped on a public street or public vehicular area while impaired already constitutes the crime of driving while impaired, a misdemeanor punishable by up to three years’ imprisonment. See G.S. 20-138.1; G.S. 20-179.

Two bills addressing moped operation were introduced in 2011, but neither became law. Senate Bill 195 would have required that moped drivers be at least 17 years old and have completed the graduated driver’s license process and that mopeds be registered with DMV and be covered by automobile insurance. The bill also would have prohibited passengers on mopeds. House Bill 773 would have ordered the Joint Legislative Transportation Oversight Committee to study the need for a moped registration program. If enacted, the bill would have directed the committee upon finding moped registration to be desirable public policy to recommend the method of registering mopeds, the process for identifying the mopeds to be registered, the administrative agency responsible for registering mopeds, the need for financial responsibility, the need for safety and emissions inspections along with other related issues.  Again, neither bill was enacted, so mopeds continue to be lawfully operated on public streets by drivers who have no license or insurance.

67 thoughts on “Driving Mopeds on North Carolina Streets”

  1. I was appointed in Rowan County to represent a teenager charged with speeding on a moped–47 in a 35 zone. This was a legal moped. He was also charged with DWLR, no insurance, failure to register. Do these become legitimate charges if you speed on a 50cc moped?

    • I was appointed in Rowan County to represent a teenager charged with speeding on a moped–47 in a 35 zone.
      If that person was doing 47 in a 35 he/she was wrong!

      This was a legal moped.
      NO it not a legal “Moped” if it was able to do over 30mph!

      He was also charged with DWLR, no insurance, failure to register. Do these become legitimate charges if you speed on a 50cc moped? YES!!

      • Bays, if you did your homework you will realize that the ‘moped’ that kid was on. was not a moped. if it runs more then 30MPH under current law, it is considered a motorcycle.

        what often happens in this state is that ‘dealers’ will sell ‘mopeds’ and tell the parents, and buys its a moped, and its not required to have tags/title/insurance. regardless of the size of the engine. I know dealers in the western part of the state that routinely sell ‘performance kits’ for the scooters, boosting them to 100, 150 or 200 cc engines, without telling the buyer it changes the status of the moped to a motorcycle .

        the dealer network needs to be policed and the law enforced, we don’t need other laws on this issue, the dealers need to be help accountable as well as the police NEED TO DO THEIR JOBS!

        its pretty simple, if the police car is passed in a 45mph zone by a ‘scooter’ that scooter is illegal.. period. see it happen all the time .

        ‘discretionary’ enforcement of the law needs to stop. people are being killed because a lot of scooter riders are arrogant and careless.

        if an change in the law needs to be made, it should be that scooters require the msf scooter course, or the basic riders course before they can purchase a moped or scooter.

        and even then, its truly up to the operator and the dealers to be honest. that is where the system fails every time. with no accountability or fines to the dealer network, and the offenders that are purchasing and speeding on the roads.. it will not change.. people will continue to be killed needlessly, the law will continue to be unenforced.

        • Scott, I certainly hope that a NC registered scooter dealer would not install a big bore kit on a 50 cc scooter and not inform the customer the scooter is no longer considered a “moped”. I know small independent shops that do this all the time. If it is happening they should be stopped. At my dealership we do not install any big bore kits. As you have stated they make the “moped” illegal and they shorten the life of the engine.

          As for changing they law, I agree with you but until the lawmakers get out of the office and come talk to the dealers they will never understand how the definition of a “moped” is extremely dangerous to those who ride 50 cc scooters.

          • You act like freaking moped dealers are dope dealers! Selling Big Bore kits on the down low like we’re importing them over the border from Mexico… From the Mexican cartel! Really?! Find a new hobby get off moped Riders back and get off the Dealer’s back for god sakes it’s a $600 vehicle and we’re just trying to keep up with traffic! You’ve already found a way to extort more money out of somebody that’s struggling by requiring registration. What you people do not realize is that speed is necessary to be safe! Acceleration is needed to be safe! Like I said in an earlier post, get on the Interstate. 30 miles an hour in the fast lane and see how long you last even in your vehicle your car your truck your SUV your Ferrari I don’t care what it is Drive 30 miles an hour and hold up traffic and see how you get treated. Going 47 miles an hour in a 35 mile an hour zone is something that cars do every single day all day long… God forbid I moped do it you want to hang Em Up and Karan Feathering take away as job take away as income take away his right to travel! Look up that law!

        • ” people are being killed because a lot of scooter riders are arrogant and careless.”

          Pfff, please!

          Same thing is true for “arrogant and careless” pedestrians, bicycle riders, and car-drivers.

          The vast majority of scooter riders aren’t careless–ride one for any amount of time in traffic and you quickly learn not to be and those whom are won’t last 30 minutes.

          And the truly “arrogant” folk would be those car drivers that pass us in their gas guzzling suvs shouting expletives and/or throwing stuff at us in fits of road rage. Yeah, the “arrogant” ones are those whom look down upon us as if we’re inferior simply because we ride scooters.

          The funny thing is that I’ve never had a DUI and earn more money than probably 80% of the haters whom pass me during my daily commute on my Yamaha Zuma.


          • Dude you commented on the exact same thing I did and I’m so glad to see that I’m not the only person that made a comment about the idiot that said moped drivers were arrogant and careless. We’re out there with our lives on the line getting blown off the road just because we’re on it. I like what you said most people wouldn’t last 30 minutes on a moped on the streets of a busy City. We don’t have time to be arrogant careless we have our lives in our hands literally!

        • The thing about scotters is this even tho they are 50cc the still go faster then 30 mph because i had one that was 50cc and the fastest i got it up to was 45 46 so even if you buy one the is 50 cc its still going to do more then the mph that state requires and honestly in my option i think its better fpr people to buy scooters because it saves more money all the government is try to do is rob the people that work and earn for a live in

        • The reason moped are in so many crashes is because the speed is too low and most moped drivers try to drive to the right hand side of the road and it’s the car operators that feel slighted because they are being held up by moped and past these moped drivers as closely and as fast as possible to get around them! It’s the car drivers that arrogant and irresponsible and intimidate the moped drivers. I see nothing wrong with the speed of a moped being 45 or 55 or whatever it takes to keep up with traffic safely. It’s the slow speed of the moped that causes the accidents! If moped could travel with the pace of traffic there would be a lot less accidents. If you don’t think I’m right about this imagine yourself driving in the fast lane on the interstate at 30 miles an hour in your BMW or your Mercedes or your Volkswagen Bug for that matter… And see what happens to you. I guarantee you you will have people passing you aggressively blowing the horn and getting really pissed off because you’re holding them up. The reason I know this is because I drive a moped. I stopped driving on the right-hand edge of the road because that gave drivers of cars what they thought was the righ oft away to pass me as closely as possible as if they wanting to blow me off the road. It wasn’t until I started taking up the whole Lane and driving in the center of my lane and forcing cars to pass me like I was a car myself and getting all the way over to the left before they went around me. I hate people that drive cars resent moped drivers because they think most of us are drunks and alcoholics and they treat moped drivers accordingly. So to correct the person that said moped drivers are arrogant and irresponsible drivers… Maybe so but people in vehicles are just as arrogant and irresponsible but no one is ever always there never anything! That was such an ignorant response to say that all moped drivers are arrogant and irresponsible when I have been cut in front of cut off pulled out in front of and run off the road just because I was on a moped. If I could keep up the traffic and not hold traffic up I don’t think there would be a problem. And from talking with other moped Riders… That’s exactly why we soup them up, so that we can hang with traffic. The disrespect that moped Riders get on the highway knows no bounds buy cars and trucks. They cut so close to you and go so fast when they pass you it makes you want to physically hurt them for driving so close to you and a 2-ton vehicle running 60 miles an hour. Yeah… I think 150 lb moped it’s pretty intimidating… Don’t you? LOL. People who drive regular Vehicles just resent moped drivers for holding up traffic that’s the bottom line. If you don’t believe me get your ass on one and drive 30 miles an hour in a 55 mile an hour speed zone then get on this forum and tell me what you think until then keep your mouth shut.

        • I think, they need to up the speed limit to 40 for a scooter. with a stipulation to take all short cuts, routes of least danger. Scooter riders need some form of law to make them mind their manners on the road.
          Of course anybody that drives, needs that in the first place.
          I am in Watauga, and we do have a law for scooter insurance. with the law to be legally tagged.
          Even people in Tennessee that come across the border to work, have to tag their scooter, and insure them.
          Now that said, people have been tricking their scooters to go faster, just because they are paying for insurance anyway.
          There is the right thing to do under the law, then what people are going to do anyway.
          Just make it safer for people in general.
          You know there are spiteful people on the road, scooter drivers, or car drivers, that think they own the road.
          Just need lawmakers to think ahead, like a game of chess.
          Can’t wait till they get flying drone cars, or even scooters, heh that should be fun.

      • Wow! 47 in a 35 mph zone? That must be a record, as the mopeds I’ve had the misfortune to follow in my car were generally moving at about 20-25 mph in 40-45 mph zones. Uphill was usually the case, but in mist cases, I had to slow to the moped’s speed. My question, which Google botched, as usual, was whether DUI drivers who lost their regular driving privileges (Yes, driving is a privilege, NOT a right) are allowed to operate mopeds. If so, this is a step or two beyond insane. If this is true, why a) is someone who has lost his or her license allowed to operate ANY motor vehicle, and b), if this is the case, whey are such moped drivers allowed to infuriate car drivers by buzz, buzz, buzzing along at 20-25 mph, in the middle of the driving lane, effectively holding the car/pickup drivers hostage behind them. My feeling is tht if someone loses their driver’s license for DUI, he or she should be allowed to travel ONLY by walking, bicycling (maybe dangerous to all parties if they are under the influence), by public transit, or by being a passenger.

        Please let me know the answer to this, as I might be angry for no real reason– only that some moped drivers are too selfish to pull over when someone wants to drive near the speed limit. After all, WE HAVE PLACES TO GO, AND USUALLY NOT ENOUGH TIME TO GET THERE, AS IT IS.

        I bicycle a good bit, and try to keep well to the right inthe travel lane. When i sense (or see, as I ride with a mirror, a driver slowing behind me, because he/she cannot pass at that time and place, I wave in thanks to them when they do pass, for having the courtesy to wait until it’s safe to do so.

        • Driving is a fundamental right, on par with the Right to simply exist, or as the Declaration would say the Right to “Life”, We live in a society which demands some form of motorized transportation in order to survive and that is a fact, at this moment, perhaps technology will improve and a better form of public transportation may one day change that, but until then, the necessity of motorized transportation morally makes driving an Inalienable Right, as to those who choose to use the term “Privilege” Well, Here is my reply, You are also correct. After all The Inalienable Right to Life, is also a Privilege. Don’t believe me? Go murder a few children and tell the courts they can’t execute you, you have an Inalienable Right to Life! So as I see it, Driving too should be held to the same standard, It should be taken and deemed a Privliege when, and only when, your actions have grossly endangered others, ect ect, Not when you fail to pay the State their extortion money and for the acts of armed robbery these corrupt courts keep doing to us. I’ve lived half my life with no license thanks to my brother using my identity and only once have I caught him in time, and proved to the cop what had occurred and had him arrested, but I can’t do a thing about the rest, so I drive without and will continue to without regard for the law. I’m greatful for it actually, as it’s given me motive to look into, and see my experience is common and our system is so broken and our people so complacent that things won’t change, not until they push too far. Go ahead, mandate a license for mopeds, keep putting men in cages like their animals just because the choose to use a controlled substance like a grown man has the Right to choose for himself, each life they ruin, each heart they break, each treason they commit, brings the day close when men who feel as I do, Genuine Patriots who see who the Tyrants are, get our Day of Vengeance and its coming. I hate it, I’d love nothing more than to see Reason come save us, but at the same time line these Facist Pigs up, I’d pull trigger after trigger and not have a moments unrest. My conscious is clean, and Right and Wrong is as Obvious as a literal Interpretation of The Words of the Declaration of Independence. Too bad our government don’t pay it any mind

        • That’s the same question I’ve been asking. If you lose your license because of a DUI, you shouldn’t be allowed to operate anything with a motor on state roads.

      • Nobody cares. I’ll take the backroads idgaf. I’ll be careful but if I want to go quick then so be it (a government that governs best governs least- Henry David Thoreau (civil disobedience).

  2. One thing our legislature could entertain is revising the NCGS 20-138.3 law regarding those less than 21yrs old. An officer can not charge this statute if the person is less than .08 unless the officer can articulate impairment.

    Example: in a private car the person is a .03 the charge will stick but on a moped, it doesn’t apply. NCGS 20-138.1 indicates “a vehicle” but NCGS 20-138.3 added the word “motor” which puts this in another category. Sure you can charge a Chpt 18 violation but this Chpt 20 we are reviewing.

    As stated above, mopeds are not motor vehicles.

  3. Whew! As usual PROFESSOR DENNING sure presents both sides of the story!!!
    Fear the poor, broke bastard moped drivers, who may have no other reasonable way to get to work, etc. Take away the one final way they have to get around at a decent speed. What else could they do? Ride the non-existent or half-assed public transportation system? Maybe walk or bicycle? Be real.
    Thank you PROFESSOR DENNING for bringing this extreme danger once again to public light!!!!!!

    • The post does not impart an ‘extreme danger’ tone, but the importance of financial and public safety considerations cannot be overlooked. While there are many law-abiding moped riders, there are a high percentage who have demonstrated they have no business being on a motorized vehicle, see study figures. (
      Our neighbor-state South Carolina regulates mopeds and their drivers in a simple and safety-related way.
      Our Honorables should look into re-introducing House Bill 773.

    • Good point! Get off of people’s backs that drive mopeds! Really there are more important things to worry about than some poor broke guy trying to make it in this world. If you revoked his driver’s license you already know you crippled him in society and he has no way to get to and from work if in fact he didn’t lose his job because he lost his license. I mean do you people have nothing else to complain about really??

  4. Ms. Dennings comment that many of the moped riders have had DWI’s, WOOW, what a revelation! Mopeds going a whopping 30 mph cannot be but so much of a danger. One is probably at a greater risk changing a light bulb than risks from a moped. Good grief! As gas prices rise I believe that we will see many more folks riding scooters. Actually they are fun to ride. I prefer motorized bicycles. Mine runs at an “extremely dangerous” speed of 26 mph and gets 150 miles per gallon. The law requires that I ware a DOT approved helment, I think a bicycle helment should do the job. But, it is the law & one should comply. If a moped/scooter goes faster than 30 mph then they have ASKED for the ticket and I do not feel for them. They all know the law. If not they will soon learn the hard way. PS: we have ENOUGH laws. The moped laws in NC are just fine. GET A LIFE and ride a scooter/moped and save the planet!?!?

      • There are many mopeds being represented as the 50 cc models, but are really 100 or 150 cc motorcycles. Driving is a privilege, not a right. The fact that they can be brazen enough to be burning Doughnuts around the Dallas courthouse square on MOPEDS leaves all the law abiding citizens wondering what is WRONG,

  5. While there are other reasons for driving a moped, the overriding reason seems to be the inability to attain a driver’s license, usually due to dui. It seems illogical to allow people who are unable to qualify for a driver’s license the ability and right to operate a motorized vehicle on public thoroughfares without insurance or any sort of qualifications. The law specifies that such vehicles are single gear and limited to 30 mph, yet in my experience, subjective as it might be, I have followed very many at speeds up to 45 mph and heard many change gears. I’ve followed several with a child passenger and even reported them. One I followed to see if the police responded, but never saw any response. My conclusion is there seems to be an apathy concerning these drivers. Some appear law-abiding and competent, but I’ve seen too many weave in traffic, ignore traffic lights, stop signs and automobile drivers and slow or impede the flow of traffic, to consider moped drivers, as a group and under the present apathetic level of tolerance, anything more than a nuisance. Since a percentage of these operators do exhibit a sense of responsibility, it seems that changes are necessary to preserve their ability to travel on mopeds – because without that responsible minority, mopeds should be banned.

    • I think people are just pissed off because people without a license have a way to travel and get back and forth to work on the same highways that they ride on! And to them riding a scooter is like a Scarlet Letter fish the a doesn’t stand for adultery it stands for alcoholic. God Mighty how can people be so damn judgemental and ignorant all at the same time? It’s disgusting

    • i speaking for myself i ride a scooter and mine does a average of 35 to 40 and its stock i use it get back and forth to work and the store i never had my license because i’ve never bother getting them, drunk drivers give scooters a bad rep but some of us use them as a cheaper way to get back and forth

  6. It is unbelievable that people that had had DUI’s are still on the roadway. The purpose of taking away their license is because they are unsafe to themselves and others when driving a machine. Since I have been living in NC, I have seen scooter drivers cause or are in a wreck while on their moped. Gennaly, they have been drinking when driving th moped and when the wreck occurs. It is a vicious cycle. I think that the people in the legislature should be the level headed and sensible one to offer more avenues of public transportation in rural areas, and make the scooter illegal. Tell me this. They can essentially stop a person from driving a car by taking their license. How do you stop a scooter/moped user from driving under the influence? You can’t take away their license .

      • Really so if you get in the car after two beers and were pulled over, arrested for a point over. you would like to be treated the same as a meth dealer. and as far as the moped people with dui’s still need to work. unless you would rather feed them and house them for free, if so pull your money out and start handing it out.

        • You all have valid points…Some of us are not druggies or drunks…Some of us live on a fixed income, can’t afford a car, have dr appointment s we have to get to…so also look at both views be for passing judgments

      • Thank you, moped guy. I try to be courteous to all vehicles, a moped is dangerous, only vehicles faster than 30 mph should be subject to license and Ins. liability laws. Mopeds are already subject to the other motorized vehicle laws.

        • My experience based on 2 years of riding a 50cc (unlicensed) and another couple of years riding a licensed 250cc bike is that auto motorists like scooterists who follow the law and ride 30mph or lower EVEN LESS than they like scooterists who speed a little and ride at 35-38 mph. The real hazzard from my experience is how dangerously car drivers respond to the low speeds that 50cc bikes are confined to, and I have the medical bills to prove it.

          My suggestion would be to allow these bikes to travel at 35mph legally so that they can keep up with the most common legal street speed in Charlotte. Some will travel at 37-38 which is not a big deal, since most cars speed by an even greater degree, but the higher speed will reduce the frustration and erratic driving of the cars around them. It will also reduce the temptation to purchase a big bore kit, and in the end, I think, will make everyone a little safer. Police should set their radar at 5mph over the limit (40mph) and pull over any mopeds that exceed that speed. When cars routinely travel 45-50 in a 35 zone without being ticketed, to limit a moped to 30mph in impractical and highly dangerous. Let them go 35 and ticket them at 40. A little extra speed on the downhill helps these low torque bikes when climbing the next one.

  7. I own a moped myself, not because I am a drunk, but because of gas prices, and live on a college campus. Got a car, but find not driving the car as much, lowers insurance, and just way cheaper on the gas.
    I do believe there should be a law for drunk scooter drivers that are caught. Some drunks will go as far as buying a 150cc scooter, granted some are just so fat, they kill a small 50cc.
    But for the average scooter owner, if a recommendation in the law where posted, like, scooter drivers it is recommended that one take as many secondary roads to get to your destination as you can. Cause if you get into an accident on a road where even a car is not suppose to drive faster then a moped. It will be the car owners fault.
    Even I a scooter owner believe if your driving drunk on a scooter, and caught, arrest them, take the bike, sell it in a police auction. Give the money to a car insurance agency to help lower insurance cost, or help Geico make another commercial, one of the two.
    Cause the first thing the drunk is going to do, is buy another scooter, and do it again. They do it if you had a law requiring a drivers licence for a 50cc.
    Put them in jail, oh that is free food, and health care.

    How do I know, go to any Walmart, see scooters parked, look at the speedometer, look for a tag, 150cc with out a tag, humm wait, guy with no teeth, smelling like a liquor store comes out.
    Bet he don’t got a licence, granted I would be for a loophole in the law for heavyset scooter owners to have a 150cc without a licence if they are sober, just need to go to work. But also think there should be 50cc scooter insurance, no licence, but tag, and insurance yessir. Cause I don’t want to be punished because of other dumbasses out there that have not learned their lessons about not drinking, and driving.
    Cause whatever law you pass, the drunk will not care, he will do it anyway without a license on a 150cc, over, and over again.

  8. I understand the frustration with seeing people who are obviously still drinking and such being allowed to use scooters, but I do wish people would be a little less judgmental. I think you should put yourself in the shoes of someone who made a very regretted mistake and is now trying to better himself. If you had gotten a DUI and then decided you needed to make a life change, but you didn’t have a way to get to work or school to support yourself or your family and truly make efforts at bettering yourself, you’d likely give up and decide to go back to drinking. And I’m sure the people who are complaining about the scooter drivers on the road are the very people complaining about having to support folks who won’t go out and get a job. Just remember, a lot of the people you see on scooters are on their way to class or are or their way to work. Maybe you could be a little less assuming and a little more understanding that you do not actually know their situation. And no, I’m not a scooter driver.

    • Finally! Very well said AB. No one thus far has mentioned or acknowledged the toll it takes finacialy or the lifestyle and career changes that must be made to acomodate a dui. For me, a scooter is my saving grace right now and a nececity to keep down the career path ive choosen. No scooter, no job. One more unemployed american looking for work with hellacious legal fees.
      And just for the record the legal limit is .08 which is easly acheved by a beer with no Wait-before-drive time. Chewing gum will make you blow positive on a breathalizer. I would bet many social drinkers who have an opinion on the burdensome scooter drivers have probably left social occasions on or above the line. Its easy to dismiss the consequences of such a simple action as a few drinks.
      there’s good and bad apples in every bunch. There dont need to be tighter restrictions on scooter drivers across the board. The slower you go the more dangerous on those pot hole ridden trecherous country roads. Let the cops weed out the ones speeding through town and driving erraticly on liquer cycles

  9. I agree with AB, you folks assume and judge each person you see on a scooter as if you know all things about them. Is it really that much of an inconvenience to pass a small vehicle which is nearly always spotted on the right side of the lane? How much of your day does this actually take? It seems you literally think, “how dare this person get in my way”. How special do you consider yourself? You pass that person and go on with your day and they continue on to work (very slowly) or class or to pickup groceries (and generally harming no one), possibly for a family which they support solely on their own income. That person may be a veteran who has made mistakes after serving for your freedom and way of life but has learned from his/her mistakes and as mentioned above, is working towards better things. Self righteousness is disgusting, as if one of you is perfection walking. The person on the scooter is probably hoping that as car after car blows by them, each passing motorist is not the one to end his/her life. Remember to keep that cell phone handy for text and conversation. Worried about your insurance after you run someone over and dent your car? How selfless of you. Take a moment and imagine if it were you who were driving that scooter and it were you who needed that mode of transportation just to scratch out a life. Your rants are just disgusting and selfish, I almost wish I hadn’t sacrificed myself to protect your freedom, but at least today when I rode my scooter I accomplished things I am proud of and stepped another day away from my past ignorance. You may never remove yourself at all from your own.

  10. The Maryland law for scooter’s and moped’s . In Maryland you need a license to ride a scooter or moped or permit , but if your license has been suspended or revoked you will not be able to get a permit to ride. As of Aug 1 , 2012 you will have to register your scooter or moped with DMV and also get insurance for the scooter or moped or you will be fined, obey tha law and ride safe .

  11. seems to me that if you own a scooter you are as said broke/ drunk ?
    get real I have a Honda ruckus that cost me right at 3 grand new, and we have just as much right on the road’s as bicycles or horse and buggy for that matter.
    maybe we should drag the guys who ride bicycles over the coal’s for being much slower and a larger risk of causing a accident.
    I agree that the guys giving this hobbie a bad name by drinking and riding should have the book thrown at them!
    a bigger problem that the law enforcement doesn’t relize s that these guys are riding bigger than 50 cc on the street’s.
    the lack of knowledge of types of scooters is there problem.
    just a little tip for you folk’s.. if you see a scoot with larger than 10 inch wheel’s its not a 50cc.
    the scoot’s with 12 inch or larger are 80 cc to 150 cc, and the cvt cover that has the kick starter attached is twice the size as a 50 cc.
    this is that part that gets my blood pressure up , I am a law biding citizen who yes has had a dwi conviction back in the 90’s and haven’t drank in year’s for my health (I am diabetic)
    and is my form of transportation to my job where I work 12 hours a day and pay taxes thank you very much.
    seems to me the nc should be worrying about the crime rate and the drug problem that is getting worse by the minute rather than wast taz payers and my money whining over a scooter/ hobbie that so many of enjoy, and 100 miles to a gallon I see guys with suits and ties riding scoots around downtown highpoint everyday.

  12. Hi there, those willing to listen and judge at the same time. Yes, I received a
    DWI. Am now riding a scooter, Honda Ruckus, and live in a rural setting. Am also physically disabled and have several doctors to see. Ride scooter to AA/NA meetings, visit probation officer, get groceries, take quiet rides to get out of the house sometimes, and ride 15 miles away from home to pharmacy. The point is there is no family or friends to help. I live by myself and tire easily. The scooter is very reliable, but a tiring pain to ride very far. The point being sometimes there is not an easy solution as many haters think. Any DWI/DUI in NC is treated the same. The is fines, fees, court costs, classes, treatment centers and so on depending on who’s case it is.My own dad says tell court there is no money and go to jail. People are so cruel, they should get out in the real world more often!

  13. It amazes me that all these people are whining about scooters being a danger.You what is dangerous?Driving 70mph in a car while you talk on your cell phone,eating fast food and playing with a gps.I have lived in both NC and SC for my whole life.I have owned all types of vehicles including a few Honda Ruckus when I lived at the beaches.I personally prefer to ride my Ruckus when the weather is nice more than my gas guzzling car.As far as all you asshats that think everyone on a scooter or moped is an alcoholic, you have just proved how stupid and ignorant you actually are.I bet you clowns drink and would blow over the legal limit on a regular basis if you were tested every time you drink and drove.In all honesty alcohol is more dangerous in this debate than a scooter any day.If alcohol was made illegal again there wouldn’t be any drunk driving.Its all about government greed when it comes to alchohol.If it was outlawed the country would surely go bankrupt without the trillions of dollars they make on the taxes on liquor and beer.

    • Exactly John, Let’s make alcohol illegal and make all these problems disappear. I bet every single one of the people that are mad about scooters break more traffic laws daily than anyone else!!! Alcohol related deaths kill more people than cancer, aids, and heart disease combined!!! Alcohol is the problem. I agree that scooter owners should have insurance, and it wouldn’t be a bad idea to restrict someone from having a scooter if they get caught driving one over the legal limit in alcohol. I think the way to go about is to make scooter owners buy a permit which requires them to have insurance to obtain the permit. There problem solved. Scooter owners should be allowed to go 35 that would help. No passengers on a 50cc, great idea. I ride a scooter everyday, pay taxes, and work my ass off to feed my children. Place the blame where it lies, and quit stereotyping everyone that rides a scooter!!! ” He who lives without sin cast the first stone”-Jesus Christ.

  14. Well we went from gay bashing to scooter bashing. Is not this country great when we all can state our personal point of view on things that we don’t even know about or agree with? What it really comes down to is $$$ the almighty dollar and people with a little power and a cheap funeral suit on a ego trip stepping on the publics right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness which every individual will have a different view of their own desires. There is no one right answer or law to fit every situation. We need to be thinking about more important things in life than bashing people with what someone else sees as a problem. Believe me riding a scooter is almost as bad as our forefathers had riding horses and wagons through bear infested forests and God only knows what else. Socialism is the first step to Communism. Every new law is taking away our freedoms one piece at a time. We need less government before we fall like the Roman Empire. Bashing scooter riders will not solve the real problems in America today. Leave the scooter riders to God and fate and get them cell phone users with 4000 pounds of death running at 70 mph that me and you meet every day on the highway! Wake up America!!!

  15. One can be charged and convicted of riding a horse on the public right or way and in public vehicular areas intoxicated. Charging a moped rider with DWI is just not a problem if the officer has his case together.

    Mopeds present the same problems to motorists as pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists. Trying to legislate the problems of the world away does not ease the responsibility to be aware and attentive to the road and the hazards. Drive defensibly and carefully.

  16. I purchased a scooter to run local errands. I love getting up to 100 miles per gallon and just the simple pleasure of riding it. I have never had a DWI or had my license revoked. I am almost sure they will become more popular with people becoming more concern for our planet. Soon the laws will be changing. Give the scooter riders a break. A lot of us have other reason for riding scooters. FUN!

  17. These bikes and the operators are by and large a traffic hazard .example A 2 lane road with a posted 45 mph speed limit ,you encounter a 27 mph moped with two people on it going up hill .A hazard during the day. A death trap at night . How merciefull
    is it to allow someone to operate a slow very small vulnerable bike with no restrictions to the operator.Allow them to run the roads and highways of North Carolina with a proven inability to drive a 4 wheel auto responsibility

  18. Bill Smith. According to your post, all bicycles, road equipment, farm machinery and local mail delivery should be banned from our roads because they can’t always do the speed limit? Pretty sad picture America!

  19. I use a moped because driving a car scares me and because it is mush cheaper. I always drive on the right side of the road and go 30mph-I never speed and I’ll be going on a street marked 25mph and I get cars about 2 feet from my back bumper before they go around speeding 45mph in a residential area. You can’t just generalize saying all moped drivers are dangerous alcoholics. Some people like a moped because it’s cheap, good for the environment, and it is the only way they can get around. Not all of the people on a moped have DUIs and drive reckless. Some of us are just trying to live our lives in peace.

  20. I’m really glad I came and read these comments. A guy drove pass me yesterday saying “Get off the road!” That really bothered me to the point where it ruined my day and made me lose the joy I had riding my moped.Like that was really the worse feeling for me…It’s like the happiness slowly got sucked outta me the closer I approached home after he said that. I told my mom about the incident when I got home to get some consolement. And she simply replied laughing “Who cares.” I was saying to myself yeah who cares. To make myself feel better. I wished I could of easily felt like that but still it hurt me… And I think its because I started thinking that maybe other drivers are thinking that way about me just hasn’t voiced there opinion verbally to me like that driver did. Of course this is negative thinking provoked by feelings of the incident. For some reason I just could not shake this off. I am a 21 year old female. who wants to be a game developer. And is currently working at Krispy Kreme getting paid just a dollar over minimum wage and is part time. Getting paid weekly. With that kinda income I cannot even afford a used car. I would have to save up a whole year worth of checks to buy a decent used card. I have been riding the buses for 3 years. I am tired of wating 30mins in freezing cold, snow and rain, And getting up 2hrs early in the morning for work that starts two hours later just to be on time for the bus. I am tired of walking 20mins to the bustop everyday, and the same amount of time to walk back home. I am tired of busses being late and running only once an hour on weekends. And having to refill my bus card a 20 dollars every two weeks. So yes I’m ganna snatch up a damn moped. Its what I can afford right now. And is better transportation then the bus. I cant tell the bus to stop right here so I can grab some lunch for work. Thank you guys and gals for the ones supporting mopeds and being so understanding. This has uplifted me and restored my happiness in driving my moped! Your right! That guy does not know my situation! and plus I was doing the speed limit I was suppose to do! and your going like 45-50 on a 35mph road! so for him to yell “get off the road!” is extrememly ignorant. I will not let ANYONE ruining my fun and happiness on my moped! let them yell and holler all they want. your in the wrong! not us!

  21. I was driving along rt. 55 near Bayboro and I was going past a lot of scooters and mopeds buzzing along the side of the road. My first thought was “hey, these people are cool, they’re saving gas, they’ve got little baskets for shopping, they must be going green.” Then I noticed that they all looked like winos. I’m from NJ, I never saw anything like this before. What the hell is going on?

  22. I was just charged with riding with one headlight out. My moped has two headlights and one was out, but most mopeds only have one anyways. I figured it would be fine to ride without it since the one that still worked was very bright. The charge says “operate a vehicle without having at least two headlamps, all in good operating condition, one on each side of the front of the motor vehicle. (G.S. 20-129(b))” In my understanding, a moped isn’t a motor vehicle, but is a moped. (G.S.105-164.3(23)) And from what I can find, i’m pretty sure having just one is completely legal. (G.S 20-129(c)) Headlamps on Motorcycles. – Every motorcycle shall be equipped with at least one and not more than two headlamps which shall comply with the requirements and limitations set forth in G.S. 20-131 or 20-132. The headlamps on a motorcycle shall be lighted at all times while the motorcycle is in operation on highways or public vehicular areas.

  23. Scooter driving to me seems like a good ordeal of a subject matter. One time I was pulled over for going 28mph in a 45mph zone when there was little traffic on it. The model of scooter I purchased was not designed with a tag light on the plate. But later on I decided to upgrade to a tag light for my existing scooter to improve visual during the night. The best times to ride are in the day when the busy / rush hour traffic has subsided.

    Admittedly these things are “not safe at all” to ride at night unless its per say in a local community with 30mph top speed limits. However I live in Florida so it can be hot during the day.. I noticed in my local slow area 25-30mph riding a lot of various forms n brand of scooter i.e. vespa / honda / and random.. they all utilize high quality head and tail lights. It is a good caution and concern to ‘read your local roads slowly’ before progressing to a more level speed.

    And to summarize I like to think of them like riding a heavier bicycle at this 30mph top speed rating. Still have to watch out of obstacles and know how to “evenly handle” situations well.. . Above this speed I have a lot of confidence in motorcycle riding classes and then well that is where the 150/250cc motor scooter offers a little bit more power, possibly more precise handling, and always larger tires that are designed for those 30+ zones from 40-45mph. I attribute my quality of 6000km or (~3700mi) riding to good 10w-30 synthetic motor oil with changes every 650mi. Most of all I inspect my front disc brakes before riding, and brake with soft-control on the lever.. brick roads though are a challenge to me still but teach a lot about handling.

  24. If a person lost her license due to a DUI, they lost a license to operate a vehicle, because they present public danger to others.
    50cc moped is not a vehicle — logically because it is considered to *not* being able to cause *others* danger on the public roads.
    So 50cc moped is treated like a bicycle and for a good reason.

    As far as general speeding laws, by the way — I would like the speeding tickets to be reflective of kinetic energy of the vehicle pulled over. An SUV going 20 miles over speed limit is a lot more dangerous *to the public* than a 100cc motorcycle going over the speed limit.

    So it is not the speed, but the kinetic energy (weight*speed) that should be proportional to the penalty for speeding on public roads.

    50cc moped is hardly a vehicle. T
    Can they not ride a bicycle

    • And then we need to add a variable in there to account for what if the moped causes someone to dodge them and ends up hittings a semi truck …then the kinetic potential energy of infinity should be applied to your equation because accidents happen

  25. I live with a disabled diabetic woman who cannot drive. I’m the only driver in the household with children. I have diabetes too. I’m the only person who works, If no one can go to work or pick up prescriptions, entire household dies. If my DWI charge is guilty, Moped is only means of life!

  26. I will tell you about the moped! It doesn’t matter where there’s 50cc and 49cc they’re both the same. There’s lower the moped goes is the more dangerous it is on any road and estate because people who drives larger vehicles seem to have it in their mind that they can run over a moped. Bicycles on the other hand can ride on the sidewalk at 60 mile an hour being 18 speeds. Nothing is ever said about that even when the roads bicycles can do more than 30 miles an hour. I would like to see that at least a moped with a license and insurance could at least go 45 for transportation purposes and not slow down traffic in anyway. You can’t stay to the right on a moped because the roads are so lumpy that it bounces you out into the traffic and that’s a dangerous situation and it’s good to have that little bit of a silly rhaetian to be able to go into traffic and that way it doesn’t cause an accident. Not what’s going 15 miles an hour headed woman pulled in front of me but it was her fault so it’s not the mopeds that’s causing all the accidents I think you better look at the people that’s running them over and hitting them!

  27. The archaic moped laws are holding the US behind the rest of the world. Every country in Europe and Asia has millions of mopeds and scooters and drivers aren’t hassled and humiliated like they are in the US. Scooters are economical get 100 miles to the gallon and on most city roads are a very practical means of transportation! Laws should be changed so 50cc scooters and mopeds are allowed to go 45mph, where the speed limit allows, because it is far safer to keep up with traffic than impede it! Scooters are purposely restricted to 30mph when they are all capable of going much faster faster unrestricted. Only in the US with all its gas guzzling roadhogs in SUV’s do we stigmatize people on scooters. We should be encouraging people to drive 100mpg vehicles and electric cars and scooters like the rest of the damn world! In China millions of people drive electric and gas powered scooters. Mopeds and scooters aren’t the ones who are dangerous on the roads its car divers! Scooters aren’t allowed on your freeways or roads above 55mph speed limit. Cars are the ones regularly flouting the laws by driving above the speed limit, passing scooters on double yellow roads, passing us in intersections, tailgating us passing us with inches to spare. I regularly have people pass me in intersections when I am signaling to turn left! Cars put me in danger on a daily basis by passing me unsafely only to immediately slow down to turn afterward and it happens so often its not funny that the person putting me and oncoming cars in danger by speeding to pass me, that I invariable catch up to them at the very next stoplight! People in the US are in such a hurry when they could get up and leave 15 minutes earlier and get where they are going on time without endangering others with their reckless driving and speeding. Yes my scooter is derestricted and goes 45mph at times and slows down to 35 going uphills but this is mainly on roads with a 45mph or less speed limit. Am I the danger on the road because everyone in cars ignores the rules and drives 55-60 in a 45 zone? We should have scooter/moped/bicycle lanes everywhere and encourage fuel efficient scooters and electric vehicles and bikes even if they are marginally slower. Driving below 55 mph except on freeways saves lives and fuel and would reduce the stress on a lot of stressed out people in cars who speed everywhere they go. I pay to register my 50cc scooter am required to insure and tag it and pay the same gas taxes car drivers do. I don’t drink and have never gotten a DWI. My license was suspended because I was depressed and suicidal and rather than hurting myself I pulled over called the police and had myself admitted for treatment of my depression. For that the doctor turned me into the state as a dangerous driver! They scheduled a hearing I never received notice of and suspended my license even though I had NO tickets! They never informed me my license was revoked and years later I was pulled for speeding and was informed my license was suspended. Now these bloodsuckers want thousands of dollars to give me my license back. I have driven mopeds and scooters for over 10 years with no additional tickets or accidents! I don’t even drink! I am not the danger on the road and truthfully I see much more reckless driving by cars than by scooters and mopeds.

  28. in new york state scooters of any cc have to insured and reg ,and you need a car license for 50cc and motorcycle license for anyrhing higher


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