Q. Why are so many scooters allowed to clog Wilmington’s roads if the majority of the scooters are supposed to be tagged with N.C. motorcycle plates in the first place? N.C. law requires scooters to be registered if the exceed 49cc (motor size); however most manufacturers have been able to produce scooters with higher power using less displacement. Will NC ever look at redefining the law to give these dangerous vehicles a maximum speed limit before having to be registered with a N.C. license plate?
A. “Your reader is basically correct,” said Margaret Howell, a spokeswoman for the N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles.
Howell forwarded the following information:
According to the N.C General Statutes, Chapter 105-164.3, the following is the definition of a moped:
“Moped – A vehicle that has two or three wheels, no external shifting device, and a motor that does not exceed 50 cubic centimeters piston displacement and cannot propel the vehicle at a speed greater than 30 miles per hour on a level surface.”
“Scooters” are not defined in the state statutes. “Only mopeds and motorcycles are defined,” Howell said.
If a two-wheeled vehicle has a larger engine displacement “and/or travels faster than 30 mph, it must be registered and carry a motorcycle plate,” she said.
“Additionally, neither a driver license nor a motorcycle endorsement is required to drive a moped. The issue of whether these vehicles are or are not cited is a law enforcement issue determined by the local law enforcement agency in the jurisdiction,” Howell said.
Date posted: April 27, 2012
User-contributed question by: