New Skatepark brings New Rules: law now requires helmets in Snoqualmie parks

Reminder to bike, scooter and skateboard riders in the city limits of Snoqualmie, the city council recently updated its ‘Wheeled Recreational Devices and Motorized Foot Scooters’ law, requiring helmets now be worn.

According to a city news release, “Those operating wheeled recreational devices and motorized foot scooters to wear a helmet. This includes those riding bicycles, scooters, skateboards, and skates on public streets, rights-of way, alleys, city property, and parks, including Snoqualmie Skate Park. The helmet neck or chin strap must be fastened securely.”

The ordinance was updated because the earlier version did not contain the language ‘city park.’ The city also recently opened a new – and popular – skatepark at Snoqualmie Community Park, where many riders often do not wear helmets.

Signage at the skatepark has not yet been updated to reflect the new helmet requirement. It does, though, state that helmets and pads are strongly recommended. At a May council meeting, SPD Chief Perry Phipps recommended the sign be updated.

The city’s ordinance also has a clause pertaining to parent responsibility. It states that it is unlawful for any parent or guardian to authorize or knowingly permit a minor to operate a motorized foot scooter or wheeled recreational devices without a helmet, or in violation of any other ordinance provisions.

Per the law, if your child is riding without a helmet and you receive written notification of the violation AND it happens again, you could be held responsible and issued a civil infraction.

Read Snoqualmie’s full Wheeled Recreational Devices and Motorized Foot Scooters law HERE.

For those who need helmets, free and low-cost helmets are available at the Snoqualmie Fire Station. You can call 425-888-1551 to reserve a helmet for an adult or child

Here’s the penalties for those found in violation of the updated law:

A. Any person violating the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed to have committed a traffic infraction and any Snoqualmie police officer may, at their discretion, issue a civil infraction.

B. In lieu of the penalty described above, any Snoqualmie police officer may utilize the following penalty provision for a person less than 16 years of age operating a motorized foot scooter or wheeled recreational device within the city of Snoqualmie in violation of this chapter:

  • The officer may take custody of and impound the motorized foot scooter or wheeled recreational device. If the officer does not impound the motorized foot scooter or wheeled recreational device, he or she may release it only to an adult, provided, the officer shall provide the operator with a written notice setting forth the procedure for reclaiming the motorized foot scooter or wheeled recreational device.
  • The procedure for reclaiming the device shall be promulgated by the chief of police, and may include the requirement that the person under 16 years of age receive approved instruction on the safe operation of motorized foot scooters and wheeled recreational devices.
  • Only the parent or legal guardian of a violator or an adult owner may reclaim a motorized foot scooter or other wheeled recreational device impounded pursuant to this section.
  • A $50.00 fee for costs of impoundment and administrative processing shall be paid to the city clerk prior to the release of any property impounded under this alternative penalty.
  • Any unclaimed devices may be disposed of in accordance with state law.

C. The second violation by any parent or guardian shall be a misdemeanor.

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