ENGROSSED SENATE BILL 6316





                        57th Legislature

                      2002 Regular Session


Passed by the Senate March 11, 2002

  YEAS 37   NAYS 7




President of the Senate


Passed by the House March 7, 2002

  YEAS 91   NAYS 2



I, Tony M. Cook, Secretary of the Senate of the State of Washington, do hereby certify that the attached is  ENGROSSED SENATE BILL 6316 as passed by the Senate and the House of Representatives on the dates hereon set forth.




Speaker of the

      House of Representatives









Approved Place Style On Codes above, and Style Off Codes below.  





Governor of the State of Washington

                   Secretary of State

                  State of Washington



                    ENGROSSED SENATE BILL 6316



                      AS AMENDED BY THE HOUSE


             Passed Legislature - 2002 Regular Session


State of Washington   57th Legislature        2002 Regular Session


By Senators Kastama, Horn, Prentice, Johnson, Eide, Finkbeiner, McCaslin, McDonald, Swecker, Jacobsen, Fairley, Oke, Costa, Thibaudeau, Morton and Benton


Read first time 01/15/2002.  Referred to Committee on Transportation.

Regulating electric personal assistive mobility devices.  

    AN ACT Relating to electric personal assistive mobility devices; amending RCW 46.04.320, 46.04.330, 46.04.332, 46.04.670, 46.20.500, 46.61.710, and 35.75.020; adding a new section to chapter 46.04 RCW; and creating a new section.




    NEW SECTION.  Sec. 1.  A new section is added to chapter 46.04 RCW to read as follows:

    "Electric personal assistive mobility device" (EPAMD) means a self-balancing device with two wheels not in tandem, designed to transport only one person by an electric propulsion system with an average power of seven hundred fifty watts (one horsepower) having a maximum speed on a paved level surface, when powered solely by such a propulsion system while ridden by an operator weighing one hundred seventy pounds, of less than twenty miles per hour.


    Sec. 2.  RCW 46.04.320 and 1961 c 12 s 46.04.320 are each amended to read as follows:

    "Motor vehicle" shall mean every vehicle which is self-propelled and every vehicle which is propelled by electric power obtained from overhead trolley wires, but not operated upon rails.  An electric personal assistive mobility device is not considered a motor vehicle.


    Sec. 3.  RCW 46.04.330 and 1990 c 250 s 20 are each amended to read as follows:

    "Motorcycle" means a motor vehicle designed to travel on not more than three wheels in contact with the ground, on which the driver rides astride the motor unit or power train and is designed to be steered with a handle bar, but excluding a farm tractor, an electric personal assistive mobility device, and a moped.

    The Washington state patrol may approve of and define as a "motorcycle" a motor vehicle that fails to meet these specific criteria, but that is essentially similar in performance and application to motor vehicles that do meet these specific criteria.


    Sec. 4.  RCW 46.04.332 and 1979 ex.s. c 213 s 3 are each amended to read as follows:

    "Motor-driven cycle" means every motorcycle, including every motor scooter, with a motor ((which)) that produces not to exceed five brake horsepower (developed by a prime mover, as measured by a brake applied to the driving shaft).  A motor-driven cycle does not include a moped or an electric personal assistive mobility device.


    Sec. 5.  RCW 46.04.670 and 1994 c 262 s 2 are each amended to read as follows:

    "Vehicle" includes every device capable of being moved upon a public highway and in, upon, or by which any persons or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a public highway, including bicycles.  The term does not include devices other than bicycles moved by human or animal power or used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks.  Mopeds shall not be considered vehicles or motor vehicles for the purposes of chapter 46.70 RCW.  Bicycles shall not be considered vehicles for the purposes of chapter 46.12, 46.16, or 46.70 RCW.  Electric personal assistive mobility devices are not considered vehicles or motor vehicles for the purposes of chapter 46.12, 46.16, 46.29, 46.37, or 46.70 RCW.


    Sec. 6.  RCW 46.20.500 and 1999 c 274 s 8 are each amended to read as follows:

    (1) No person may drive a motorcycle or a motor-driven cycle unless such person has a valid driver's license specially endorsed by the director to enable the holder to drive such vehicles.

    (2) However, a person sixteen years of age or older, holding a valid driver's license of any class issued by the state of the person's residence, may operate a moped without taking any special examination for the operation of a moped.

    (3) No driver's license is required for operation of an electric-assisted bicycle if the operator is at least sixteen years of age.  Persons under sixteen years of age may not operate an electric-assisted bicycle.

    (4) No driver's license is required to operate an electric personal assistive mobility device.


    Sec. 7.  RCW 46.61.710 and 1997 c 328 s 5 are each amended to read as follows:

    (1) No person shall operate a moped upon the highways of this state unless the moped has been assigned a moped registration number and displays a moped permit in accordance with the provisions of RCW 46.16.630.

    (2) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a moped may not be operated on a bicycle path or trail, bikeway, equestrian trail, or hiking or recreational trail.

    (3) Operation of a moped, electric personal assistive mobility device, or an electric-assisted bicycle on a fully controlled limited access highway ((or on a sidewalk)) is unlawful.  Operation of a moped or an electric-assisted bicycle on a sidewalk is unlawful.

    (4) Removal of any muffling device or pollution control device from a moped is unlawful.

    (5) Subsections (1), (2), and (4) of this section do not apply to electric-assisted bicycles.  Electric-assisted bicycles may have access to highways of the state to the same extent as bicycles.  Electric-assisted bicycles may be operated on a multipurpose trail or bicycle lane, but local jurisdictions may restrict or otherwise limit the access of electric-assisted bicycles.

    (6) A person operating an electric personal assistive mobility device (EPAMD) shall obey all speed limits and shall yield the right-of-way to pedestrians and human-powered devices at all times.  An operator must also give an audible signal before overtaking and passing a pedestrian.  Except for the limitations of this subsection, persons operating an EPAMD have all the rights and duties of a pedestrian.

    (7) The use of an EPAMD may be regulated in the following circumstances:

    (a) A municipality and the department of transportation may prohibit the operation of an EPAMD on public highways within their respective jurisdictions where the speed limit is greater than twenty-five miles per hour;

    (b) A municipality may restrict the speed of an EPAMD in locations with congested pedestrian or nonmotorized traffic and where there is significant speed differential between pedestrians or nonmotorized traffic and EPAMD operators.  The areas in this subsection must be designated by the city engineer or designee of the municipality.  Municipalities shall not restrict the speed of an EPAMD in the entire community or in areas in which there is infrequent pedestrian traffic;

    (c) A state agency or local government may regulate the operation of an EPAMD within the boundaries of any area used for recreation, open space, habitat, trails, or conservation purposes.


    Sec. 8.  RCW 35.75.020 and 1965 c 7 s 35.75.020 are each amended to read as follows:

    It shall be unlawful for any person to lead, drive, ride, or propel any team, wagon, animal, or vehicle other than a bicycle, electric personal assistive mobility device, or similar vehicle upon and along any bicycle path constructed within or without the corporate limits of any city or town excepting at suitable crossings to be provided in the construction of such paths.  Any person violating the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.


    NEW SECTION.  Sec. 9.  The legislature shall review the provisions of this act and make any necessary changes by July 1, 2005.


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