Missouri Moped Laws
Missouri Moped Laws
WHERE TO RIDE MOPEDS AND BICYCLES
On public streets and highways, you have the same rights and
responsibilities as a motor vehicle operator. Always ride with traffic, never
against it. When operating at less than the posted speed or traffic flow,
generally ride as near to the right side of the roadway as safe. The right
edge of the road often has hazards like ditches, gutters, sand, and gravel
shoulders. Leave space between yourself and these hazards as needed for
You may move more toward the middle or left of the lane or roadway, as
• when making a left turn;
• when avoiding hazards;
• when the lane is too narrow to share with another vehicle; and
• when there is a right-turn-only lane and you are going straight.
Always check traffic and signal before changing lanes or changing your
position within a lane. On a one-way street, bicyclists may also choose to
ride as far left as is safe.
The law does not allow you to ride a moped on any part of the federal
interstate highway system.
SAFETY TIPS FOR MOPED AND BICYCLE RIDERS
1. State law does not require you to wear a helmet. However, wearing a
safety-certified helmet can prevent serious head injuries or death.
2. Be sure your bike is in safe condition and has all the equipment
required by law.
3. Make sure motorists see you. Wear bright colored clothes and stay out
of a vehicle’s blind spots. Use proper lights and reflectors when riding
4. Make sure you signal before you slow down, change lanes, or turn.
Before merging, changing lanes, or turning, scan behind and in front to
ensure that it is safe to make this maneuver. Do so in plenty of time
and in cooperation with other drivers who will be affected by your move.
If it is not safe, continue on a straight course and scan repeatedly and
only move once it is safe. In conditions of heavy traffic, less proficient
bicyclists may find it easier to wait near the curb for a safe gap to
5. Be careful when passing to the left of a parked or moving vehicle. You
should leave 3 to 4 feet of clearance to avoid suddenly opened car
doors or to allow for a vehicle to swerve.
6. Be extra careful at intersections. Do not assume your right-of-way
when there is a vehicle approaching. Be aware that motor vehicle
drivers may not see you approaching the intersection, or may believe
that you are moving at a slower speed than you are.
7. Keep a steady line and be predictable as a courtesy to other traffic and
to increase your personal safety.
8. For teen and adult bicyclists, studies show that riding on the street with
traffic, not against it (following the same traffic rules that other vehicles
do), is far safer than riding on the sidewalk.
MOPED DRIVERS NEED A DRIVER LICENSE
To drive any motorized bicycle such as a moped on the public streets, you
must have a valid driver license.
Licensing for a scooter or moped depends on whether the
vehicle meets the definition of a motorized bicycle. The
Missouri statute definition of a motorized bicycle is as
"Any two-wheeled or three-wheeled device having an automatic
transmission and a motor with a cylinder capacity of not
more than fifty (50) cubic centimeters, which produces less
than three (3) gross brake horsepower, and is capable of
propelling the device at a maximum speed of not more than
thirty (30) miles per hour on level ground."
A motorized bicycle does not have to be registered with the
Missouri Department of Revenue. However, you must have a
valid driver license (though no motorcycle endorsement is
Missouri statute does not require a helmet to be worn when
operating a motorized bicycle. Please contact your local
law enforcement agencies for any county/municipal codes that
deal with helmets and motorized bicycles.
Keep in mind that no motorized bicycle may be operated on
any public thoroughfare located within this state that has
been designated as part of the federal interstate highway
EQUIPMENT REQUIRED ON MOPEDS AND BICYCLES
You do not have to register your moped or bicycle and it does not have to
be inspected. However, Missouri law requires certain equipment on
mopeds and bicycles.
BRAKES — Your brakes must be able to stop you within 25 feet when
traveling 10 mph.
LIGHTS AND REFLECTORS — The number of bicycle-auto crashes rises
dramatically between sunset and sunrise. Almost all such crashes can be
prevented with proper bicycle lights and reflectors. You must have the
following lights and reflectors when riding your bicycle from ½ hour after
sunset until ½ hour before sunrise:
1. A WHITE LIGHT on the front of your bicycle or carried by you that
other drivers can see from 500 feet.
2. A REAR RED REFLECTOR, at least two square inches, or a REAR
RED LIGHT that drivers can see when reflected by their vehicles’ low
beam headlights at 600 feet.
3. REFLECTIVE MATERIAL OR LIGHTS on the pedals, crank arms,
shoes, or lower legs that drivers can see when reflected by their
vehicles’ low beam headlights at 200 feet.
4. REFLECTIVE MATERIAL AND/OR LIGHTS ON EACH SIDE OF THE
BICYCLE or bicyclist that drivers can see when reflected by their
vehicles’ low beam headlights at 300 feet. This does not apply to
mopeds that comply with the National Highway Traffic Safety
FOR DRIVERS - SHARING THE ROAD WITH MOPEDS AND BICYCLES
• If you are following a bicyclist and need to make a right turn, slow down
and remain behind the cyclist until you are able to turn.
• Cyclists often travel at surprisingly fast speeds. If you need to make a left
turn, yield to oncoming bicyclists unless you are absolutely sure you can
make the turn before the cyclist reaches the intersection.
• Bicyclists change speed and lane position when encountering bad road
conditions, such as manhole covers, diagonal railroad tracks, drain
grates, road debris, or in strong winds. Be ready to react.
• When you are passing, give bicycles and mopeds a full lane width. Do
not squeeze past these road users. The bicycle is generally a slower
moving vehicle and this may require you to slow down. Wait for a clear
stretch of road before passing a cyclist in a lane too narrow to share.
• Check for passing bicyclists before opening your car door into a traffic
lane or bicycle lane.
• A bicycle lane is a portion of a roadway designated by striping to be
used by bicycles. You may cross a bicycle lane when turning or when
entering or leaving the roadway. You must yield to bicyclists in a bicycle
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