HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.R. NO.

136

TWENTY-FIRST LEGISLATURE, 2002

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 
   


HOUSE RESOLUTION

 

requesting the department of transportation to convene a task force to examine ways to control the use of motorized scooters AND OTHER MOTORIZED DEVICES on sidewalks, highways, and public areas.

 

 

WHEREAS, H.B. No. 2126 was introduced during the 2002 Regular Session of the Legislature which proposed to ban gas-powered or electric motorized scooters on public sidewalks, parks, and school yards; and

WHEREAS, the proponents of H.B. No. 2126, which was deferred by the House of Representatives' Committee on Transportation, sought in good faith to solve a growing danger perceived by police, pedestrians, elderly, bicyclists, and others that is the result of indiscriminate use and speed of motorized scooters by young riders; and

WHEREAS, for many years scooters were toys used by children to "scoot" from place to place using only the two wheels on the scooter and their feet; and

WHEREAS, today many of these scooters can be upgraded with a motor using gas power or electricity and can thereby reach higher speeds of as much as thirty miles per hour; and

WHEREAS, motorized scooters are also noisy, disturbing residential neighborhoods, schools, and hospitals; and

WHEREAS, unregulated, these motorized scooters are used on sidewalks, are driven by children as young as thirteen years old, and can seriously injure, or cause the death of a person who is hit and knocked to the ground, or these children can be hit themselves by motorists who do not expect a small vehicle to appear before their car; and

WHEREAS, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reported that 4,390 injuries related to motorized scooters occurred in 2000, that for the first nine months of 2001 there were 2,870 emergency room treated injuries related to motorized scooters, and that thirty-nine per cent of these injuries were suffered by children under age fifteen; and

WHEREAS, other states such as California, Washington, Arizona, Vermont, and Oregon have laws restricting the use of motorized scooters, in some cases classifying them with motorcycles, banning them from bicycle paths, pedestrian areas, in buildings, and sidewalks; and

WHEREAS, the Honolulu Police Department, which responds to accident scenes, has been aware of the problems associated with motorized scooters and the control or restrictions that need to be developed to protect the public; and

WHEREAS, the Department of Transportation in its statewide role of administering all transportation systems is also responsible for some highways, roadways, sidewalks, and can provide input from the vehicular perspective; now, therefore,

BE IT RESOLVED by the House of Representatives of the Twenty-first Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2002, that the Department of Transportation is requested to convene a task force to examine ways to control the use of motorized scooters and other motorized devices on sidewalks, highways, and public areas; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Transportation is requested to include in the task force, at a minimum, representatives from the Honolulu Police Department, hospitals, emergency room physicians, retailers of scooters and motorized scooter dealers, scooter rental agencies, including rental agencies of motorbikes and motorcycles, bicycle groups, noise and environmental groups, and other interested groups; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the task force is requested to examine the statutes of the aforementioned states and others that have attempted or are attempting to solve the motorized scooter dilemma, in order to propose legislation for the Hawaii state Legislature; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Transportation's task force on motorized scooters is requested to report its findings and recommendations including suggested legislation to the Legislature twenty days before the convening of the Regular Session of 2003; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Resolution be transmitted to the Director of Transportation and the Chief of Police of the City and County of Honolulu.

 

 

 

OFFERED BY:

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Report Title:

Motorized Scooters; Task Force