Moped/Motor Scooter Collisions
Mopeds (also known as motor scooters) have become a popular method of transportation here in Florida, where moped use is increasing at one of the fastest rates in the nation according to The Motor Scooter Report. There are few other modes of transportation that are as economical, efficient, and fun as riding a moped. However, due to distracted and impatient drivers, riding a moped can be dangerous and result in substantial personal injury.
Definition of a Moped
Some drivers and insurance companies may try to claim that you were unlawfully operating a vehicle on a road or highway. This can present a problem in a personal injury claim if the vehicle is not registered or titled, or if you were driving without a license, or operating a moped or scooter that was not large enough to be classified as a moped under Florida statute 320.01(27). Under that statute, a moped is defined as a vehicle that:
- A vehicle with pedals to permit propulsion by human power;
- Has a seat or saddle for the use of the rider;
- Has no more than three wheels;
- Has a motor rated at two brake horsepower or less;
- Cannot go over 30 miles per hour on level ground;
- Has a power-drive system that functions directly or automatically without clutching or shifting gears after the drive system is engaged; and
- If it has an internal combustion engine, the displacement is not over 50 cubic centimeters.
Difference Between a Moped and Motorcycle
- A motorcycle has an engine larger than 50cc; and
- A moped has an engine 50cc or smaller.
Riding Rules For Mopeds
- A moped does not require a title, but does require registration.
- A driver’s license is necessary, and driving on a highway is not lawful.
- If a moped is going slower than the speed of traffic, it must move to the right to allow traffic to pass, otherwise the moped can take the full lane, and it is unlawful for traffic to cross a double yellow line to pass; and
- Mopeds cannot use the bike lane, bike path, or sidewalk.
Three Common Types of Moped Collisions With Larger Vehicles
Driver Cuts Off Moped—A driver pulls out in front of a moped that has the right of way, causing a T-bone collision or rear-end collision in which the moped driver either slams into the side of the car, goes over the hood, or runs into the back of the vehicle, potentially going through a window. Mopeds may be smaller, and appear to be traveling at slower speeds than they really are, but this is no excuse for lazy, distracted, or impatient driving by the car or truck occupant.
Driver Illegally Passes a Moped—Electric and gas-powered mopeds have the right to the road, just as cars and trucks do. However, they are smaller and sometimes slower than other traffic, resulting in road rage or irritation. A driver “stuck” behind a moped may attempt to make an illegal pass on the left or right of the moped driver, and strike them in the process.
Driver Rear-Ends Moped—A distracted driver hits a moped from behind, either while the moped is moving or stopped at a stop light.
An Orlando Personal Injury Attorney Is Here to Help
If you were injured by a negligent driver while riding your moped, scooter, or motorcycle, an Orlando personal injury attorney can help. To receive fair and full compensation, call the Payer Law today at 407-307-2979 to schedule a free consultation.