New Bill to regulate motor-driven delivery scooters

In the recent years, there has been a multiplicity in the use of motorized scooters in New York. The use has primarily increased for the purposes of deliveries. Given the frequent usage of these vehicles and considering the amount of care that a driver should take, whether medically or legally, a new law to regulate this is mandated.

Motorized scooters are currently unregulated in New York. This may lead to liability problems for both the owners of the vehicles and the people injured in accidents. Usually owners of small scale businesses not covering liability insurance for the scooters end up closing down if challenged by lawsuits. At the same time people who suffer injuries cannot recover damages from defendants who may be unable to satisfy a judgment.

Last month, state Senator Jose Peralta and state Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas (D-Astoria) jointly introduced corresponding bills in the state Senate and Assembly to regulate the operation of motor-driven cycles only for commercial purposes. The bill (S.4814/A.7360) requires the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to maintain a registry of the vehicles and establish regulations pertaining to their safe operation and relative minimum liability insurance. The bill also warrants registration of the drivers with the DMV.

The bill aims to penalize operators of the vehicles for any traffic infraction by way of charging fines ranging from $25 to $100. However, these motor-driven cycles would fall under the ambit of any other motor vehicles for purposes of determining civil and criminal penalties for any unlawful usage or operation of these vehicles that would violate any existing law. However, such penalties would also include point reduction in driver’s license records.  

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