Police believe more are on the road

Scooter

Hezekiah Godette rides his scooter after getting lunch at the Taste of China restaurant in Havelock. Godette said an eye infection prevented him from getting a driver's license and that the scooter offers him a chance to run errands and get around town.

Ken Buday/Havelock News
Published: Wednesday, September 4, 2013 at 08:05 AM.

Hezekiah Godette has been riding his scooter around Havelock for about a year.

“This is my car here. It’s my truck,” he said.

The motorized scooters that can reach speeds of about 35 mph are proving to be a popular alternate mode of transportation, mainly because a license is not required to operate one. The only requirements are that the engines not exceed 50 cubic centimeters and that operators be 16 years old and wear helmets.

In Godette’s case, an eye infection prevented him from getting a driver’s license, so he turned to a scooter.

“I got this to get around with,” he said after picking up his lunch at the Taste of China restaurant last week. “I couldn’t pedal a bicycle to get around with, so this comes in handy. It’s a handy little thing. It’s just to run around town or run around the neighborhood to do what you want to do.”

Still, there are some concerns that the scooters or mopeds pose a safety hazard on the road, not only for operators of the scooters, but also for vehicle drivers who may have to slow quickly and switch lanes to avoid them. Last month, a scooter was involved in a crash with a vehicle in Havelock, though no one was injured.

Sgt. James Fahnestock, of the Havelock Police Department, said the scooters are entitled to the entire lane in which they operate and that those in vehicles must switch lanes to get by them.



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