Safety Policies

SY16 Regulations for Bicycles and Personal Mobility Devices

Policy Status: 


Subject Matter Expert: 

Wesley Sheets, 814-863-6054,

Policy Steward: 

Chief of University Police and Public Safety



The following rules and regulations for bicycles, mopeds, skateboards, scooters, in-line skates, roller skates and electric personal assistive mobility devices apply to all persons operating any such mode of transportation on University property.


Acrobatics – any action on a transportation device in which blades, skates or wheels are off the ground simultaneously, or where the device is being used in a manner not consistent with normal transportation.

Bicycle - a two-wheeled pedal cycle, including “E” bikes (as defined by PA Act 154 of 2014).

Electric Personal Assistive Mobility Devices (EPAMDs, aka. Segways, etc.) - a self-balancing one or two-wheeled device with an electric propulsion system designed to transport only one person for personal mobility purposes.

Mall – a public area designated as a pedestrian walkway.

Motor Driven Device (e-scooters, e-boards, etc.) – devices propelled by internal combustion, battery, or other mechanical or electro-mechanical means; and designed to transport one or more persons and do not meet PA Vehicle Code requirements as a “motor vehicle” to be operated on a roadway, excludes EPAMDs and E-bikes.

Pedal cycle - unicycles, bicycles, and tricycles. Vehicles that are designed to be propelled by human power via operable pedals.

Roadway - Roads open to the use of the public for vehicular travel on campus grounds (a.k.a. public highway).

Scooter - a narrow platform mounted on tandem wheels with a handle to steer by turning the front wheel propelled solely by human power.

Shared Use Path - Any campus pathways not directly adjacent to a roadway.

Sidewalk – A paved pathway running directly along and adjacent to a roadway.

Skate - a shoe, or attachment for show, with a set of wheels attached for gliding movement.

Skateboard - a board of any length (including long boards and electric powered boards) mounted on roller skate-type wheels.

Sled - A coasting device with runners designed to slide on ice and snow.


No acrobatics of any kind are permitted.

The use of skateboards and skateboard-like devices on campus property is prohibited.

Motor driven devices (e-scooters, e-boards, etc) that do not meet the PA Vehicle Code requirements for operation on a public highway are prohibited from use on University property; to include buildings, roadways, sidewalks, bike paths and shared pathways.

Human powered roller skates, in-line skates, scooters (excluding medical), sleds, and similar coasting devices are not vehicles and use of such devices are prohibited in roadways, parking areas, bicycle routes, and within any building on campus. Persons on such devices are pedestrians for traffic control purposes and may be cited for applicable violations of the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code.

The use of a sled or similar device is prohibited upon any sidewalk or improved surface used only for pedestrian traffic.




All bicycles must be operated according to the provisions of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Vehicle Code as it pertains to bicycles, as well as to the rules and regulations contained in this policy.


Any person bringing a bicycle on any campus of the University shall register the bicycle and obtain a permit.

NOTE: Those bicycles registered by the Borough of State College are valid on the University Park Campus. Also, the University Park-issued permits are valid in the Borough of State College. This is by reciprocal agreement, and identical permits are issued. Upon expiration of the two-year permit, the bicycle/moped must be re- registered. Other University locations may make similar arrangements.

At University Park, bicycles shall be registered on-line. Bicycle permits will be mailed to local addresses only.

At locations other than University Park, the Police/Safety Office will establish locations, times, and procedures for bicycle registrations.

Each bicycle, in order to be acceptable for registration and issuance of a permit, must be equipped as follows:

  1. A red reflector on the rear visible at a distance of 500 feet.
  2. A white front facing light is required if a bicycle is operated at night which is visible at a distance of 500 feet.
  3. An amber reflector on each side such as on pedals or wheels.

Registrations and/or permits are non-transferable. In the event of the sale of a bicycle, or transfer of ownership, the new owner must register the vehicle in his/her name.

The non-transferable bicycle permit must be affixed to the middle of the seat tube or visible on the seat post if it is a racing bicycle, and must face the front of the bicycle. The post or seat tube must be clean and dry for the permit to adhere properly.


Enforcement of these regulations shall be in effect at all times. Please note that E-bikes must meet the following criteria (as defined by PA Act 154 of 2014) to be considered legal and treated as “bicycles” in the state of Pennsylvania:

  • Weigh less than 100 pounds
  • Be equipped with two or three wheels at least 11 inches in diameter
  • Have operable pedals
  • Be powered by an electric motor rated no greater than 750 watts
  • Be capable of speeds no greater than 20 mph on a level surface when powered only by the motor source/throttle

Motorized pedal cycles with operable pedals, a motor rated at 1.5 horsepower or less with a cylinder displacement of less than 50cc’s are also considered legal and to be treated as “bicycles” on campus.

Bicycles shall be ridden on campus roads and shared use paths only. Riders must dismount and walk their bicycle at all other places. Specifically,  bicycles shall not be ridden on sidewalks along university-owned roads within the campus proper, bounded by Atherton Street, Park Avenue, College Avenue, and University Drive.

The operator of bicycles on malls, shared use paths, and roadways must exercise due caution, follow traffic laws, ride with regard for the safety of pedestrians and property and yield to pedestrians. Police Bike Patrols may operate on University sidewalks for routine patrol duties, when in pursuit of violators, or when responding to emergencies.

Operators shall not wear or use headphones or earbuds. Single earbud use is permitted for navigation purposes.

Bicycles shall be parked on campus at places clearly designated by the presence of bicycle racks. Specifically, a bicycle must not be parked in  automobile parking  spaces, on lawn areas, shrub or flower beds, streets, driveways or in any building. This also includes sidewalks, trees, railings, light poles, entrance ways to buildings, or places that hinder pedestrian travel. Exceptions include racks in  designated indoor bike parking areas (i.e. bike rooms) where access to exits are not impeded. Bikes should not be left on campus racks for greater than 72 consecutive hours unless the racks are in a residence area or in a bike storage room.

At University Park, a copy of the bicycle regulations may be obtained at the Transportation Services website (Biking | Transportation ( or at the Parking Office. Any abandoned or non-registered bicycle parked on campus, or any bicycle  parked hindering University operations, obstructing steps or a handicap ramp may be removed and impounded by Transportation Services. If it is necessary to cut a locking device to remove the bicycle, no reimbursement for the locking device will be made. If unclaimed within 90 days after impoundment, it shall be deemed a gift to the University, to be disposed of through appropriate University channels.

Any bicycle parked at any location of Penn State shall be parked at the risk of the owner and should be locked when unattended.



(EPAMDs, aka. Segways, etc)


All EPAMDs must be operated according to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Vehicle Code as well as to the rules and regulations contained in this policy.


Registration of all EPAMD users is required for all users, including students, visitors and employees and will include a color-coded registration sticker to be affixed  to the EPAMD.

At the time of registration, students and visitors will receive written safety procedures (developed by Environmental Health and Safety, University Police and Transportation Services) and will be asked to sign a document stating that they have received the registration and procedures. For individuals who use their own EPAMD on University business (e.g. traveling between classes), registration and hands -on training for these individuals is required.

At the time of registration, University employees who may be using a University- controlled and owned EPAMD as a part of their job responsibilities will receive hands -on training by Transportation Services or the Director of Business Services.

Registration stickers will be color-coded and prominently displayed to ensure easy and rapid identification of users in the event that enforcement action is needed.


These devices are restricted to sidewalks only but shall use crosswalks to cross roads. Users must exercise due caution and yield to pedestrians.

Riding of EPAMDs inside buildings is prohibited. They shall be stored in areas that do not block egress or access. They are not permitted to be stored in building lobbies, stairwells, stair towers, corridors and ramps inside or outside of buildings or lined parking spaces. EPAMDs may be walked inside buildings to approved and designated storage and/or charging areas.

Only people with disabilities who have a documented need to use the device inside of buildings will be allowed to use them inside Penn State buildings. Penn State will consider the request of any faculty, student, or staff person wanting to use the EPAMD inside of buildings as a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). As such, the person will be required to provide appropriate documentation that they have a disability that requires the use of an EPAMD for mobility inside of our buildings.

For students, Student Disabilities Resources (SDR) will be the office responsible for collecting and reviewing such documentation. SDR is located in 116 Boucke Building at University Park. The phone number is (814) 863-1807.

Faculty and staff should contact their Human Resources Representative, or the ADA Coordinator who will be responsible for collecting and reviewing such documentation. The ADA Coordinator is housed in the Office of Equal Opportunity and Access (OEOA) in 328 Boucke Building at University Park. Email or call 814-863-0471.

Regarding operating speeds, persons shall operate at a speed that is reasonable and prudent under the conditions having regard to the actual and potential hazards then existing. 

Helmets meeting ANSI/ Snell Memorial Foundation/ASTM standards shall be worn at all times during operation of the Electric Personal Assistive Mobility Devices by employees. Students and visitors are encouraged to wear such helmets.

When in use between sunset and sunrise, EPAMDs shall be equipped with - on the front, a lamp, which emits  a beam of white light  intended to illuminate  the operator’s path and visible for a distance of at least 500 feet to the front, a red reflector facing to the rear which shall be visible at least 500 feet to the rear and amber reflector to each side. A lamp or lamps worn by the operator shall comply with these requirements.

Operators shall not wear or use headphones or earphones except one earphone for a cellular telephone may be worn.


Transportation Services (at University Park) or the Director of Business Services (at Commonwealth Campuses) will be responsible to register EPAMDs used on campus and maintain registration records. They will also jointly develop written safety procedures with Environmental Health and Safety and University Police and provide training on safe use of EPAMDs.

Risk Management will compile and follow-up as appropriate all non-employee accident reports involving EPAMDs and provide EHS with copies.

Environmental Health and Safety will review all procedures and reports to periodically monitor incidents, trends and usage of items under this policy, including EPAMDs and recommend appropriate changes. EHS will jointly develop written safety procedures with Transportation Services and University Police for EPAMDs.

Supervisors (department chairs, faculty and other employees with direct oversight of University employees, including students) will ensure that each employee or student under their supervision or oversight who uses an EPAMD on campus will comply with the registration, training and usage requirements of this policy. This also includes the reporting of all accidents to University Police or Worker's Compensation reports, if injured at work.

Operators of EPAMDs on Penn State property will ensure that they register these units and follow the use requirements of this policy.

For students, the Student Disabilities Resources (SDR) will be the office responsible for maintaining documentation pertaining to requests to use EPAMDs inside buildings as specified herein.

The Coordinator of ADA Programs in the Affirmative Action Office (AAO) will be responsible for maintaining documentation pertaining to requests to use EPAMDs inside buildings as specified herein.




Persons may coast or ride upon human powered roller skates, in-line skates, and scooters on sidewalks provided they yield the right-of-way to pedestrians on foot and follow traffic rules at intersections.

Permitted devices may be parked on campus at places clearly designated by the presence of bicycle racks. Specifically, a device must not be parked in automobile parking spaces, on lawn areas, shrub or flower beds, streets, driveways or in any building. This also includes sidewalks, trees, railings, light poles, entrance ways to buildings, or places that hinder pedestrian travel. Permitted devices should not be left on campus racks for greater than 48 consecutive hours. Failure to comply with any and all of these restrictions may result in the impoundment of the device and a $75 per device fine.

Students or employees violating these regulations are subject to disciplinary action by the University. Any other persons violating these prohibitions may be cited for Criminal Trespass for continued or repeated violations of these regulations on the campus.


Violations of these regulations shall subject the violator to penalties as follows:

NOTE: Mopeds, as motor vehicles, are subject to enforcement and penalties provided under the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code.

Violation Penalties
Violation Penalty
Excessive speed, stop sign violations, wrong way on a one-way street, passing on the right of traffic, etc.) $50
Parked or affixed to handrails, handicap ramps, wheelchair curb cuts, etc. $75
Equipment violations (no reflectors, failure to use front facing white light between dusk & dawn) $25
Failure to properly register a bicycle $10
Skateboarding on PSU property $25
Unauthorized devices on roadway $25
Failure to yield to pedestrians on walkway $25
Unauthorized device on sidewalk $25

First time BEEP offenders can have their first ticket waived by completing and passing the online BEEP training course at All other tickets are subject to collection.

Bicycle penalties at University Park are payable at the Transportation Office. At other University locations, penalties are payable at the Business Office.

If payment is NOT received within  thirty (30) calendar days from date of the violation the penalty will be increased by $3.00 per day over the initial thirty-day period. Any person receiving a ticket who feels that the charge is unjust or in error, and who wishes to appeal, may do so by emailing the Alternative Transportation Program Coordinator at Appeals must be received within 20-days of the date of violation.


For questions, additional detail, or to request changes to this policy, please contact University Police & Public Safety.

Most recent changes:

  • August 4, 2023 - Updated definitions, added prohibtion, updated various points throughout Bicycles and EPAMDs, including regulations, changed/updated links, revised the name of the Transportation Office.  

Revision History (and effective dates):

  • November 14, 2023 - Updated contact info for ADA office.
  • November 11, 2023 - Updated sentence related to where bicycles should be ridden.
  • June 8, 2023 - Updated policy steward and subject matter expert.
  • October 21, 2021 - Updated transportation website link; BEEP terminology; EPAMDs speed regulations; and revised language to personal mobility purposes
  • July 10, 2019 – Updated title and link text.
  • May 30, 2019 – Updated definitions to account for motorized personal devices, added definition and regulations for e-bikes, updated penalties to align with BEEP program, and updated contact information throughout document.
  • December 3, 2014 - Updates were made to the following sections to reflect current operations and regulations: BICYCLES AND MOPEDS (Regulations and Penalties sections); ELECTRIC PERSONAL ASSISTIVE MOBILITY DEVICES (Regulations section), and SKATEBOARDS, SCOOTERS, IN-LINE SKATES/ROLLER SKATES, AND SIMILAR DEVICES.
  • June 19, 2014 - Editorial changes. Addition of policy steward information, in the event that there are questions or requests for changes to the policy.
  • June 16, 2010 - Editorial changes to BICYCLES AND MOPEDS - "Responsibilities" subsection. Updated responsibilities for removing and/or impounding of abandoned or non-registered bicycles, and revised where to obtain bicycle regulations.
  • October 13, 2008 - Definitions, other edits and prohibitions regarding central campus added and clarified.
  • June 20, 2006 - Revision History added.
  • October 26, 2005 - Electric Personal Assistive Mobility Devices added to policy.
  • May 6, 2005 - Editorial changes to eliminate "General Forms Usage Guide" reference, correct link and verbiage for where users are to obtain the form.
  • January 21, 1999 - Changed "roller blades" to "in-line skates" and "Police Services" to "University Police."
  • August 16, 1996 - Revised REGISTRATION section.
  • April 11, 1994 - Substantial revisions to entire policy.
  • August 30, 1993 - Updated PENALTIES verbiage.
  • July 16, 1987 - Major revisions.

Date Approved: 

November 17, 2021

Date Published: 

November 11, 2023