The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office has noted a wave of community questions, concerns, and confusion as electric and gas-powered scooters have increased in popularity. Often called, ‘go-peds’ or ‘razor scooters,’ these vehicles look more like small motorcycles than simple scooters.
While all of the vehicles described below are legal to own, there are illegal ways in which they are used. The following information may help clarify the differences between these vehicles, and the law pertaining to each. Remember, there are many more varieties than those explained. For your reference please see the Scooters, pocket bikes, mopeds, and more picture dictionary (PDF).
We recommend you keep a copy of the identifying paperwork for your motorized vehicle with the vehicle. That way, if there is any question as to the classification of the vehicle, you will have the answer on hand.
“Toy vehicles” are human-, gas-, or electric-powered vehicles with wheels typically less than 14 inches in diameter. Toy vehicles include mini-bikes, stand-up scooters, and go-peds. Toy vehicles may not be operated on public roadways, but may be operated on private property with the owner’s permission. They may not be operated on sidewalks if motorized; they may be operated on sidewalks if human-powered.
An operator of a motorized bicycle must have a valid driver's license or a minor driver's license. No motorized bicycle shall be operated on any sidewalk but may be operated upon roadways, and in bicycle lanes included within such roadways. Motorized bicycles shall be registered with the Division of Motor Vehicles, and the decal will be affixed to the motorized bicycle frame in a conspicuous place. Every motorized bicycle shall have an identification number stamped on its frame which shall be recorded upon registration.
Every motorized bicycle operating between dusk and sunrise will be equipped with a lamp on the front, and with a red reflector on the rear. All motorized bicycle will have a bell or other device capable of giving an audible signal.
Neighborhood Electric Vehicle
A ‘neighborhood electric vehicle’ is a self-propelled, electrically powered vehicle with a top speed of 25 miles per hour. It is similar in appearance to a golf cart. There are no areas in unincorporated Jefferson County where neighborhood electric vehicles or golf carts may be operated on roadways.
Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV)
An Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) is any self propelled vehicle which is primarily designed for operation off public roadways, typically for recreational purposes. It includes vehicles designed to operate on water, snowmobiles, military vehicles and golf carts. These vehicles may not be operated on public roadways unless specifically posted.
OHVs used strictly on private property do not need to be registered. OHVs driven in Colorado and on public land must be registered.
To report a violation or other concern, call the Sheriff’s Office non-emergency number at 303-277-0211.