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Legal Requirements for Driving a Moped in Colorado

Motorcycle accident attorneys at The Babcock Law Firm make certain you fully understand the legal and safety obligations of operating a scooter in the Centennial State

You don't have to live in sunny California or Florida to take pleasure in zipping around town on a Vespa, moped or scooter. Colorado offers plenty of blue skies and beautiful scenery to take in as well—however, moped motorists are advised to be extremely cautious when driving in bad weather conditions or on icy roads.

Not only are mopeds and scooters fun to drive, they are also usually less expensive than a traditional vehicle. But before you start scooting around Denver or another Colorado town, it is imperative that you understand the legal requirements to operating a moped in this state, as well as the risks of driving without a helmet.

Moped and Scooter by the Books

According to the Colorado DMV, the state defines a moped (or other small, motorized vehicle) as "a vehicle with no more than 3 wheels and an engine capacity of no more than 50 ccs or 4,476 watts." While most scooters fit this description, some are more powerful and may be categorized as a motorcycle. You must know which category your mode of transportation falls under in order to apply for the right license and registration.

License & Registration Requirements

Scooter owners will not need a special license to operate their moped unless it is powerful enough to be labeled as a motorcycle. In that case, you'll need a motorcycle endorsement license. Of course, like all Colorado motorists, you will need to have a valid driver's license.

Colorado law does require you to have certain paperwork on file in order to register your moped/scooter with the state. These documents include:

  • Application to register a low-powered scooter (Form DR 2701)
  • Proof you own the scooter
  • Bill of sale slip,
  • Affidavit, or
  • Manufacturer's Statement of Origin (MSO)
  • Proof of insurance

After gathering the required paperwork, you can visit an authorized scooter dealer and they should be able to issue you a registration. Or you can mail these documents to the Colorado Department of Revenue Motor Vehicle Registration in Denver, CO 80217. The Registration Section on 1881 Pierce Street in Lakewood also takes applications in person.

Scooter Safety

It's important to be aware that riding a scooter does pose a greater level of risk to the driver. Those who drive closed vehicles are protected by their car's metal frames and safety features like airbags and seatbelts. However, scooter drivers do not have these protections.

Moreover, like motorcycles, scooters, Vespas and mopeds are small enough to get lost in the blind spots of larger vehicles. And since these smaller vehicles are also often quiet (much quieter than a motorcycle), they are frequently unheard by other motorists.

Because of these risks, it is vital that you always wear a safety helmet when operating a scooter, Vespa or moped. In the state of Colorado, adults 18 or older are allowed to ride a motorcycle without a helmet; however, it is always better to err on the side of caution when riding a smaller vehicle at high speeds around larger vehicles.

Failure to wear a helmet can make any scooter, Vespa or motorcycle accident significantly more serious, increasing the risk of head and brain injuries, or even death.

You can find out more facts about moped accidents and scooter safety by reading this article.

Scooter Accident Lawsuits

Due to the serious nature of injuries in most car accidents involving scooters and motorcycles, if you're involved in such an incident you should seek advice from a lawyer who has experience with motorcycle accident cases and knows the laws surrounding them.

If you sustain serious injuries or damages from another driver while riding a moped, scooter or motorcycle, schedule a free consultation with one of the experienced collision attorneys at The Babcock Law Firm. In addition, please visit our blog and knowledge center to find more information about these and other types of vehicle accident cases.

Continue reading these related articles for more information...

**NOTE – this article and all content at Injurylawcolorado.com is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice

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