Moped Laws in Arizona
By Zachary Mushkatel on March 12, 2019
Mopeds are a simple and convenient way to get around town, and they are an increasingly popular option among people in cities across Arizona. However, when a moped rider gets involved in a collision or other automobile accident, the vehicle’s relatively small size and the rider’s lack of protection could lead to devastating and possibly fatal injuries.
If you have been injured in a moped accident in Arizona, you may be entitled to financial compensation if another party caused your injuries. However, if you are found to be partially at fault for your accident, your award could be significantly reduced. For this reason, it is essential that you obey all Arizona moped laws at all times in order to protect your health and your ability to collect compensation should you ever be involved in an accident.
Do You Need a Special Moped License?
In Arizona, mopeds can travel at speeds of up to 25 miles per hour and have a 1.5 braking horsepower. Braking horsepower measures the strength of a vehicle’s engine by measuring how much force is required to stop it.
Arizona law requires moped drivers to have a license to operate the vehicle. The state provides many different types of licenses, which are categorized by classes. Moped drivers are permitted to operate with any type of license, regardless of the license class.
To be clear, those who operate the popular electric scooters that have cropped up in cities around the country in recent years – commonly called Bird scooters or Lime scooters – do not need to have a driver’s license to operate them. A rider does not need a license to operate an electric scooter because the speed of these machines reaches only about 15 miles per hour on flat surfaces.
Do You Need Insurance to Operate a Moped in Arizona?
To operate a moped in Arizona, drivers must insure and register their vehicle. Many insurance options are available. The policy that you choose will depend on your specific needs and what the law requires. When deciding on an insurance plan, you should consider how frequently you use your moped, your driving habits and your driving record. The types of moped insurance coverage include:
- Bodily injury liability – This insurance offers financial protection in the event that you cause a collision that results in another person’s injury or death. According to the Arizona Department of Transportation, moped owners in our state must have an insurance policy that provides at least $15,000 in bodily injury liability for one person and $30,000 for two or more persons (or per accident).
- Property damage liability – This insurance provides protection in the event that you cause a collision which damages another person’s property such as a vehicle or fence. Under Arizona law, you must have a policy that provides at least $15,000 in property damage liability per accident.
- Collision protection – This policy covers the cost of repairs to your moped, regardless of who caused the accident.
- Comprehensive coverage – This insurance can offer protection in the event of theft or vandalism. Carrying this insurance is an especially good idea for those who commute and park their moped along the street.
When you shop for moped insurance, you should take advantage of any lowered rates or deals that insurers offer if you have a clean driving record. Bundling is another option that can help with affordability. If you have an existing plan with an insurance company for your home, apartment or another vehicle, you may get a better deal if you use the same company.
Additionally, moped drivers must register their vehicle annually in Arizona. The deadline for registration is October 31. For your initial registration, you will need the manufacturer’s certificate of origin (MCO) and a notarized copy of your bill of sale.
Safety Equipment and Rules of the Road
Arizona law requires moped operators under the age of 18 to wear helmets. Though they are not required for operators ages 18 and older, it is always a good idea to wear one. A helmet can help to prevent traumatic brain injury if a crash occurs. It may even save your life. Additionally, mopeds must be equipped with the following features:
- Tail light
- License plate light
- Rearview mirror.
Since the maximum speed of mopeds is only 25 miles per hour, operates cannot ride them on roads with speed limits that exceed 35 miles per hour. This rule effectively excludes moped drivers from operating on highways and other high-speed roadways. Since mopeds don’t commonly have blinkers or brake lights, drivers must use signaling for their own safety and the safety of those around them.
What Can You Do If You Are in a Moped Accident?
After a collision, your health and safety are the most important considerations. Make sure you seek the medical attention that you need if the collision has left you with injuries. Accidents can leave people with internal injuries which may not be immediately felt or noticeable. So, you should play it safe and get medical attention even if you do not think you were harmed.
You should stay at the scene of the accident. It is always a good idea to call the local police right away. An officer can secure and evaluate the scene. The officer will also gather information from all parties involved and create a police report. You can later reference this report during the insurance claims process. Additionally, you should take pictures of the scene and property damage and collect information from the other people involved such as their insurance information, names and phone numbers.
Seeking the help of a personal injury lawyer after a collision is a crucial way to protect yourself. If you have been injured, a lawyer will discuss the accident with you, evaluate your situation and help you to pursue any compensation that you are due.
Get Help from Our Arizona Moped Accident Attorneys Today
If you have been involved in a moped collision in Arizona, you may face painful injuries, expensive medical bills, property damage and time missed at work. The skilled personal injury lawyers at Mushkatel, Robbins & Becker, PLLC, will protect your rights and guide you through the process of pursuing full and fair compensation. To discuss your case, call or reach us online today and receive a free consultation.
Zachary Mushkatel is an Arizona native who earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Arizona in 2001 and his law degree from the University of Minnesota Law School in 2004. After serving as a public defender, he entered into private practice and, ultimately, joined forces with Mathis Becker to form the law firm known today as Mushkatel, Robbins & Becker, PLLC. In addition to criminal law, Mushkatel practices civil litigation, with a focus on estate litigation and personal injury cases. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce and Sun Valley Lodge, and he is an executive officer and member of the Board of Directors for the West Maricopa County Bar Association.