Ask The Mayor: Why are Segways Permitted on Sidewalks, but Not Skateboards?
Mayor Alan Arakawa answers some of the most-asked questions submitted to his office staff.
Dear Mayor Arakawa:
Q: Why is it legal for the Segway tour company in Lāhainā to kick people off the sidewalks and slow down traffic, but it is illegal for a person to ride a skateboard as an actual form of transportation?
A: The law sets different parameters for both. According to HRS 291-134.5, a Segway fits the definition of an “electric personal assistive mobility device” (EPAD), which means that unless otherwise prohibited or regulated by a county ordinance, an EPAD may be operated on sidewalks, at a speed no greater than 8 miles per hour, and on bicycle paths of the state. The state law further specifies that EPAD operators must be at least 16 years old, and should operate the device with care by yielding to and avoiding collisions with pedestrians; riders should not be “kicking people off the sidewalks.” In contrast, Maui County Code prohibits riding “roller skates, coasters, toy vehicles, skateboards or similar devices” on sidewalks in business districts, or on roadways except while crossing the road in a crosswalk (MCC 10.52.150).
Want to Ask the Mayor?
Submit your questions about County of Maui programs, services, operations or policies to Mayor Alan Arakawa via email to [email protected], by phone at 270-7855 or mail to 200 S. High Street, 9th Floor, Wailuku, Hawai‘i 96793. Questions submitted will be considered for inclusion in the Ask the Mayor column.