A dangerous gift: Police Department cautions parents about kids and scooters

Stock photo | St. George News

ST. GEORGE – On the heels of the holiday season, the St. George Police Department issued a warning Friday for parents who gave motorized scooters as gifts this past month and for anyone whose child rides a motorized scooter.

“A popular gift for children, teens, and even adults are motorized scooters,” a press release from the St. George Police Department said. “Our officers have seen an increase in the use of these vehicles so we wanted to remind everyone of the laws in place regulating these scooters. There are some misunderstandings out there about what is legal and what is not.”

A St. George Police officer was recently patrolling a neighborhood and saw two children riding a motorized scooter, the press release said. The child driving the scooter was weaving in and out of the roadway and running stop signs without regard to traffic and without making any effort to check for oncoming cars.

“The two on the scooter nearly collided with a truck pulling a trailer,” the press release said.

Shortly after that, the same officer saw another child riding in a roadway on a stand-up motorized scooter. In both instances, the press release said, there were no adults present, and the children on the scooters were not wearing helmets or protective pads.

According to the press release:

Every officer will tell you what a tragic situation it is to respond to an accident involving a child. In October of last year St. George Officers along with LifeFlight responded to the Little Valley area on a two year old child who was run over by a truck, thankfully this child survived.  Our hopes are that by understanding the laws and taking the appropriate safety measures we can minimize these accidents.

Scooter guidelines

The St. George Police Department offered the following information regarding proper use of scooters.

The types of scooters that do not have to be registered, according to the press release, are motor-assisted scooters, electric bicycles and personal motorized mobility devices.

  • Motor-assisted scooters: A motor-assisted scooter has a deck or a deck and a seat; is capable of being operated under human power alone; and has a small engine less than 40 cubic centimeters. These are essentially skateboards and scooters with small engines. These scooters cannot be operated on any street with four or more lanes and cannot be driven at speeds greater than 25 mph, according to the press release. No registration or driver’s license is needed with this type of scooter; however, if the operator is younger than 15 years old, the child must be under the direct supervision of a parent while riding the scooter.
  • Personal motorized mobility devices: These are Segway-type personal transporters with two side-by-side wheels. No registration or driver’s license is required to operate one of these devices.

According to Utah law, no one under the age of 18 may operate or ride on a motorcycle or “motor-driven cycle” on any highway unless the person is wearing an approved helmet. In addition to helmets, other safety equipment is highly recommended, the press release said.

“We encourage all scooter enthusiasts to learn the proper use and operation of your scooter before riding it and also learn and abide by the laws,” the release said. “By so doing you will reduce the risk of and potential of being involved in an incident.”

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  • marcbeth January 10, 2015 at 9:07 pm

    I saw a couple 12 year olds riding motorized scooters fast on the sidewalks of hidden valley park. With slides and swings within a few feet away it was dangerous for these girls to be riding there. I had to keep my young children away from the sidewalk for fear they’d be run over. Oh and no parents there…but that’s a common complaint with that park

    • SUSAN January 11, 2015 at 6:12 am

      OMG…kids playing in a park by other kids. So watch your kids and dont worry about others. How does that sound nosey. How in the world did any of survive without policing and helmets.

      • Chris January 11, 2015 at 9:58 am

        watching your kids necessitates worrying about others, especially those others whose stupid parents have provided them with motorized scooters. Maybe, you are one of those stupid parents, Susan.

      • arts and letters January 11, 2015 at 2:50 pm

        Hi Susan…I agree with you completely about nosy people in general…they’re a pain in the tush and poke their big noses in other people’s business, sometimes causing problems. But I don’t read any of the comments here as being nosy…I see them as adults who are concerned about kids perhaps being in harm’s way. I no longer have little kids around, but I would have been very grateful to have somebody let me know my kids were doing things that could get them injured or killed. Most of the commenters are not being judgmental (a few exceptions and you know who you are), just concerned.

        Kids don’t play these days the way they did even a few years ago, before some of the more sophisticated things came out like the motorized scooters. If they’d been around for my kids, I’d have wanted them to wear helmets, too. Kids just don’t have the ability to be good judges of what’s safe and what’s not. There are plenty of ways for kids to be hurt as it is without adding to the equation by not doing the best we can for them as parents.

        It’s not nosy, it’s just concern.

  • arts and letters January 10, 2015 at 10:50 pm

    Yup, kids riding everywhere in the parking lot of the apartment complex where I live. Very scary and dangerous. They dart in and out between the cars and pay no attention to anything but the scooter. I know these are fun for them, but the close calls for drivers who can’t see them until they’re right behind or in front of you are heart stopping. Parents, please talk to the kids and make sure they’re safe. We all want them to be safe.

  • Billy jean January 10, 2015 at 10:53 pm

    I wish there was more of a crack down on helmets. I see quite a few minors riding on backs of motorcycles and scooters with no DOT approved helmet. At Panorama Elementary I saw 2 parents pick up their kids and put a bicycle helmet on them, just crazy to see that happen. That type of helmet is no protection if there were to be an accident. I ride with my kids and I take every precaution nessesary.

    • SUSAN January 11, 2015 at 6:13 am

      Your so awesome. How about you not worry about how others parent their children.

      • Joelle Whitney January 11, 2015 at 8:24 am

        Susan, your parenting concept is great, until it is one of your children that is badly injured or worse, due to the lack thereof. I’m guessing Billy Jean, myself, and many others, would not like to be involved in said situation, when it could EASILY be prevented by Law Enforcement (hence the article) and increased parent-child education on safety precautions and parent supervision.

        • SUSAN January 11, 2015 at 10:13 am

          JOELLE, My kids have nothing to do with it. I’m smart enough to take care of my kids, but again, it is not your business or anyone else’s what someone else does with their kid. Thats my point, but your too busy being nosey to catch that.

          • Joelle Whitney January 11, 2015 at 12:41 pm

            Your kids have everything to do with it. Statistics are statistics. Nobody thinks they (or their child) will be one.

            Not anyone else’s buisness what “someone else does with their kid”? Sounds like you’re promoting child neglect. Don’t forget, it becomes everyone’s buisness when a tragedy occurs at the hand of a careless or lazy parent.
            Not nosey at all (this is, indeed, a public forum), just stating facts.

          • TruthSeeker January 12, 2015 at 3:22 am

            Way to stick up to these spineless state sucking parents that shelter their children. Stay proud Susan.

        • Gary January 11, 2015 at 3:30 pm

          If you want to provide your child with a helmet, pads, etc please feel free to do so. If you want to educate your children about safety, again please feel free to do so. That is your right and as you state, your responsibility. However, it is NOT the responsibility of government so please do not attempt to make it so.

          • arts and letters January 11, 2015 at 4:52 pm

            Following your logic, automobile drivers should be able to just drive anywhere they want in any lane they want going any direction as fast as they want. We don’t need no stinking laws! Responsible communities, including states, have laws and responsible citizens follow them. Including parents.

        • TruthSeeker January 12, 2015 at 3:16 am

          Joelle, to your whole statistics kick, law enforcement doesn’t prevent crime. They show up afterwards…. Nor is safety genuinely being promoted, it’s a guise for generating revenue and keeping control of citizenry. It’s up to the parents that have common sense and not falling for the new security surveillance state.

          • Sweet Jude January 12, 2015 at 11:53 am

            Oh really.. Truthseeker. You speak the truth, don’t you? Why don’t we all fill the bandwagon of Truthseeker so we can learn more of his amazing truths. He knows all. Amazing.

            Susan, wow, you are amazing too. That is, until your kids are found under grave circumstances.

          • Joelle Whitney January 12, 2015 at 3:12 pm

            I’m sorry you feel that way. Let me know who you’re going to call when you need help

      • arts and letters January 11, 2015 at 8:46 am

        It’s wrong for people to be concerned about all kids? Wow. I wish your kids well.

        • SUSAN January 11, 2015 at 10:13 am

          Read above reply to Joelle and apply to yourself.

          • The world January 11, 2015 at 2:00 pm

            Dear Susan,

            Please stop having children.

            The World.

          • Shelly January 11, 2015 at 3:17 pm

            Susan – I guess we’re all nosy when we are driving around watching out for kids on scooters and bikes ? I must be nosy when I back out of my driveway and am always looking for kids who come in my driveway and ride their scooters and bikes on the street? All I do is worry about running over them, but according to you we’re all nosy.

        • TruthSeeker January 12, 2015 at 3:19 am

          Laws are for irresponsible people, or for responsible people to follow. Responsible ones don’t need laws acting as cattle guards for dumb down sheep. Follow your own logic… By the way, name a driving law. There’s o ouch thing. There’s a a difference between a laws, and statutes codes regulations.

          • TruthSeeker January 12, 2015 at 3:21 am

            Typo, not for responsible people

        • TruthSeeker January 12, 2015 at 3:20 am

          To arts and letters

          • arts and letters January 12, 2015 at 9:12 am

            I kind of figured that. Nitpicking the words doesn’t make it okay for kids to ride their scooters in ways that can get them injured or killed. These attacks on people who are concerned are just another example of Cliven Bundy logic and attitude toward any aspect of government around here. By the way, do the local folks in uniform ever call themselves “statute enforcement officers”? Didn’t think so. Seems to me you’re not seeking the truth at all. You’re seeking a fight. There’s a difference.

      • Chris January 11, 2015 at 10:00 am

        You are a real piece of work, Susan. I’ll be looking for your kids in the arrest records, maybe you too.

        • Evil Twins Mommy January 11, 2015 at 9:30 pm

          Shelly I was going to comment but you pretty covered what I was thinking… good comment. I couldn’t of said it any better. Everybody have a good day tomorrow and please be nosy while driving…..

      • that guy January 11, 2015 at 11:53 pm

        Or don’t parent like yourself right Susan!

  • mumof6 January 11, 2015 at 7:20 am

    I wish the photo matched the type of scooter the article was about. The manual razor scooter riders should also be wearing helmets but the risk is not the same.

  • Dolly January 11, 2015 at 11:35 am

    I have to say that I am very careful not to drive anywhere in the vicinity of a school when children are coming and going. I won’t say they are all oblivious, but a few just pay no attention whatsoever. Just last week, I had a teenage boy zip out of a driveway across the street to the neighbors driveway on a dirt bike – not 10 feet in front of me. Of course, he was not wearing a helmet. He looked so surprised that anyone else would have the nerve to be driving on “his” street. Lucky for both of us that I had good reflexes that day. I was tempted to stop the car and scold him, but I’m sure the parents would have been offended!

    • The world January 11, 2015 at 2:01 pm

      Im sure he was one of Susan’s brood. 🙂

  • Braxton January 11, 2015 at 12:30 pm

    I agree kids should be more aware but I see hundreds of adults riding there bikes on the roads and not stopping at stop signs and ignoring traffic laws why isn’t there a big problem with them? Let the kids have fun just let them know to obey the stop signs and to watch for any traffic.

  • Betty January 11, 2015 at 3:58 pm

    Be assured if your kids aren’t utilizing proper safety equipment on any motorized vehicle (I.e., scooter, ATV, Razor or __________ [fill in the blank]), they too could possibly end up like the youngman in the next article, in a semi-coma state with a brain injury. Which will eventually be the publics financial responsibility (fundraisers or state Medicaid recipient).

  • Koolaid January 13, 2015 at 10:11 am

    Why are people giving their kids motorized vehicles to play in the streets? Why can’t they take their cherubs to the splashpad, carousel, play parks and childrens museum and other government provided things they demanded from taxpayers?

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