In these modern days that we live in, technology is aiming to provide us with perks that help us in our daily routines and tasks. Among the many technological advancements are the e-bikes.
Initially, certain rules and regulations were put in place to manage the growing usage, but as time goes by, things are starting to loosen up.
Before we dive into the rules and regulations, first let’s look at what is an e-bike?
E-bike definition and history
In general, an e-bike is a regular bicycle with an electric motor with batteries. The motor provides additional power to the wheel enabling the rider to pedal with less effort and achieve greater speeds.
If you think that e-bikes as a concept are something from the 21st century, you are mistaken. Records are dating back to the late 19th-century show proof of similar devices.
According to sixthreezero.com, the hype behind the e-bikes began recently, and there are several things to bear in mind before you start scouring the internet for electric bikes for adults.
Regulations and Rules
Like anything that is used in great numbers, the e-bikes got some restrictions and rules that people need to follow and obey. Throughout the US, the rules are different, but today we will be talking about New York.
Throughout the entire city, the highest number of e-bike users are delivery workers. The reason for that is because moving with a car through traffic takes time, and e-bikes can go through them in a jiffy. Having that many e-bikes in the streets of New York meant a lot of fines for a lot of people, which is why things started to change.
The first change that took place recently was making e-bikes legal to be ridden through the city, but not all of them. There are two types of e-bikes: pedal assisted and throttle. The pedal assisted e-bikes are the “slower” version, where you’d still have to pedal, and the electric motor only provides a little push. Throttle e-bikes are very similar to scooters but can reach greater speeds than the pedal assisted e-bikes.
New York State’s law provided some contradictory rules that caused a lot of head scratches. First of all, electric motor-powered transportation to be registered just like a car. That included the e-bikes. On the other hand, the same law made certain vehicles to be illegal to register. That list included go-carts, golf carts, and our favorite – e-bikes. To make things worse, e-bike sales have never been forbidden, making it okay to buy one, but not okay to ride it.
Today, New York’s laws are slightly loosened, making the e-bikes more welcomed than before. For starter, pedal assisted e-bikes are completely legal, while throttle e-bikes are still illegal. If you think about risking riding your throttle e-bike, think again. Yidi Zhu, a delivery worker in Chinatown, was caught riding his delivery throttle e-bike. He was fined $500 and got his e-bike seized.
Will anything change?
There is a good chance that it will. Eric Adams, Brooklyn’s Borough President, is a huge supporter of these kinds of vehicles. He says that the throttle e-bikes used by delivery workers should not be illegal and that they should try to incorporate them into the system.
If we looked back several years ago, we could see a lot of restrictions when it comes to e-bikes. As they become more and more popular, we see those restrictions losing up. In the years to come, as their popularity increases, we should expect to see the e-bikes becoming an everyday item in all of our lives.