Florida moves to protect motorcycle, scooter riders

Publish Date: 
Mar 5, 2014

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Florida’s Legislature is considering companion  House and Senate bills that define motorcycle and scooter riders among “vulnerable road users.” 

The bills would subject motorists who commit moving violations to stiffer penalties if those riders are injured.

SB 1312, filed by Sen. Greg Evers, and HB 1159, filed by Rep. Dwight Dudley, would charge any motorist who commits a moving violation that causes serious bodily injury to a vulnerable road user with a second-degree misdemeanor.

If the vulnerable user dies as a result, the penalty increases to a first-degree misdemeanor, with the possible loss of a motorist driver’s license for at least one year, but not replace other charges the motorist could face.

The specification includes pedestrians, people engaged in work on highways and people legitimately on the road traveling on bicycles, motorcycles, scooters, mopeds; or animals, operating farm equipment, skateboards, in-line skates, horse-drawn carriages, electric personal-assistive mobility devices or wheelchairs.

The proposal has support from a number of organizations, including the Florida branch of the American Bikers Aim Toward Education (ABATE), a motorcyclists-rights organization, according to SaintPetersblog.

Posted by Holly Wagner