There was a time when everyone just assumed hoverboards—which, no, don't actually hover—were legal in NYC, and probably everywhere. Ride 'em if you got 'em, etc. But then we saw a tweet from a local police precinct declaring they were illegal, and after looking into it further, and discussing it with a lawyer... yep: hoverboards are illegal in NYC. (Here's why.) Following that news, a couple of politicians stepped forward to fight for the right to hoverboard.
First there was Councilman Andy King, who suggested they be legal in certain areas: parks, playground, and, confusingly, sidewalks, which seem like a terrible place to allow these in a crowded city. Next up was Senator Jose Peralta of Queens, who proposed they be made legal on sidewalks and in parks, but added that they "should not be operated on the roads alongside cars, buses and trucks."
The push to legalize hoverboards is moving forward, and today the NY Times reports that King is now supporting Peralta, along with Assemblyman David I. Weprin, who took the fight to City Hall.
On Tuesday, he held a news conference at City Hall to highlight a problem some young people now find themselves with: being the proud owner of a new hoverboard, but having nowhere to ride it without getting in trouble.
The New York Police Department says the devices are prohibited in the city under state law. Mr. Peralta wants to amend the law and let cities create their own rules. In New York City, riders could be required to wear a helmet and kneepads or to stay in parks.
At the press conference, Peralta further explained, “We need to regulate these hoverboards so people can ride them in a safe manner." At a different press event, Police Commissioner Bratton offered this insight: “To be quite frank with you, I think anybody who rides these things is out of their minds. We live in an extraordinarily crowded city; you have a hard enough time walking down the streets, let alone hovering."
As for Mayor de Blasio, his concern is safety: “We want to make sure if they are used in the city on any broader scale, that it’s done safely." Mike Tyson can't even handle this shit!
— Mike Tyson (@MikeTyson) December 29, 2015
Aside from transportation safety, this also means they need to stop spontaneously combusting. Hoverboards have been blowing up all over the place. Literally blowing up. Exploding. That is why airlines won't allow them, Russell Crowe.
Anyway, outside of City Hall, God is cool with it: