Are Segways Allowed to Ride on the Sidewalks?

Segways are powered conveyances that can travel upright at speeds of up to 15 miles an hour. They can be used to supplement walking and cycling, and are regulated at both the local and state levels.

Application

Segways, a two-wheeled form of transportation, have been used in many different applications. They are often used in the workplace to transport employees around large warehouses. Segway tours are offered in many cities. These tours allow tourists to ride the Segways while visiting various places around the city. With permission from the property owner, Segways can also be used on private property for recreational purposes. Although they can be ridden on many surfaces, users report that Segways are most comfortable to ride on on flat surfaces like sidewalks.

Legal Status

Segways are not motor vehicles as defined by federal law. Therefore they not subject to regulation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. They are instead regulated by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission, and are considered a “consumer item”.

State Laws

Many states have adopted legislation specifically pertaining to Segways. Under state law, these devices may be called “electric personal assistive mobility device”. Segway transportation can be directed to use sidewalks, bike paths, or other smaller roads according to state law. State laws might also specify a minimum age for the rider to legally use this device.

In 2015, 45 states and District of Columbia passed legislation that allowed the use of electric personal assistance mobility devices, like Segways. Arkansas, Kentucky and North Dakota have not yet enacted legislation allowing Segways to be used on public property such as sidewalks or bike paths.

Some states prohibit all electronic conveyances from being ridden on sidewalks and bike paths. The state laws might specify whether the Segway rider can be considered a cyclist, pedestrian or another individual. If the Segway is used in an area with a high minimum population, it may be considered a motor vehicle under state law. Many states also include language in their laws that allows towns and cities to adopt separate legislation that prohibits or permits the use of Segways within specific areas.

Segways are legal to be used on sidewalks in most jurisdictions. There are many rules that vary from one jurisdiction to another. Segways can be legally ridden on sidewalks, but they are not considered motor vehicles and must be registered and insured. You should check the laws in your state for any restrictions or regulations regarding Segways.

Potential for Accidents

It can take practice and time to learn how to ride a Segway. Segways are different from other transportation options, such as skateboards, skateboards and bicycles. They require great balance, and riders could cause accidents with pedestrians and vehicles if they lose their balance. It can also be challenging to turn these devices.

Insurance

Segways can be expensive. Insurance companies provide insurance for Segways used for personal, industrial, recreational, tourist, and commercial purposes. Insurance for Segways is the same as for motor vehicles. It includes collision and comprehensive coverage options that account for injuries that riders may cause to others, theft, and damage that may be caused by other people. A personal injury lawyer can help you determine whether the owner of a Segway has insurance that will cover your injuries if you are injured.

Updated 12/8/2021