Olsen Seeks to Legalize Electric Skateboards

Courtesy of Assemblymember Kristin Olsen.

In the spirit of her new bill to legalize electrically-motorized skateboards, Assemblymember Kristin Olsen (R-Modesto) hosted a demo day for at the State Capitol to garner support.

“It makes no sense that an environmentally-conscious product that is designed and assembled in our state cannot be legally operated here,” said Olsen.

Current state law, established in 1977, bans the boards for the rationale of keeping noisy gas-powered boards off the street. However, Olsen argues that today’s boards offer an alternative mode of transportation while being eco-friendly, quiet and safe.

"AB 604 simply seeks to modernize California law so this industry can grow and provide more jobs and convenient transportation options for short commutes,” said Olsen.

Geoff Larson and Ben Foreman, Co-Founders of Intuitive Motion, the manufacturers of the ZBoard came up with the idea for the law while brainstorming for their senior project at the University of Southern California, which started with a Kickstarter campaign that gained the support of more than 400 people who pledged more than $278,000. The duo’s goal was a device that is faster and easier to ride than a skateboard, and more fun and portable than a bike.

“My hope is that this bill will encourage more companies to develop similar transportation models that will help make public transportation a viable option for a wider range of commuters by making the last mile between home, work and the transit station quicker and easier to travel to,” said Foreman.

Should Olsen’s bill pass, electrically-motorized skateboards would be permitted for use in bike lanes and wherever bikes are presently allowed

“The team at Intuitive Motion and I are very excited about AB 604, as it will encourage Californians to get out of their cars and onto innovative and sustainable personal transportation vehicles,” said Foreman.

The bill was heard in the Assembly Transportation Committee this week. 

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