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E Bikes

Updated on March 4, 2012
Safe ? I think not.
Safe ? I think not.

E bike Insurance

It has come to my attention that my friends living in the East have more ebikes on the roadways than we do. I appreciate your interest and know full well of the quantity of use in places like China, Britain, Spain and all those places in between. Please keep safety number one each time you go out on your bike.

A recent email to me mentioned that each person should also carry some form of ebike insurance. I have not looked into this to see what the best ebike insurance might be but I will tell you this. If you are out riding, and there is any possibility of accident, (and trust me, there is) then you need to look into insuring your ebike. Cover yourself from the possibility of a law suit.

May each of you drive safe, be safe, and enjoy your ride.

Ebikes - Safe or not?

First, I want everyone to know that I believe the economic use of the E bike is fantastic. Do not, and i repeat, do not come at me as someone that does not understand the usefulness and the savings economically with respect to the E bike explosion.

My 'issue' lies in the safety. These units, standing alone, or being used by a trained operator can be considered safe.

However, in my travels, I have seen everything that has disappointed me in its use.

There are many different body types, colors, manufacturers and each have done their best to add or give each unit its own safety features. Lights, horns, mirrors and more. However, these items are absolutely useless when the operators do not use them.

Here in Ontario Canada, the Highway traffic act considers these electric bikes to have the same rights to the road as a bicycle. When you see an Ebike on the road, in front of you in the same lane. He or she has the right to the entire lane. You are NOT permitted to edge by him/her with your vehical. You must pass them as though they are taking up the whole lane. Similar to a motorcycle. When these Ebikes are operating on the road, they are to use signals weather they use signal lights or hand signals, they are required to use them. They too, are not allowed to edge up along side of your vehical on the left or right to get ahead of traffic.

Here lies my issue with them. Operators of these either do NOT know the rules of the road, or are simply ignorant to using them properly. Many deaths will occur on these machines soon enough. As teenagers and younger, operate on the roadways without proper training. Even adults that use them, seem to think that passing on the right is acceptable. Even more foolishly, operators of motor vehicles do not know the rules of passing a bicycle or Ebike.

Have you encountered someone driving an E Bike in an unsafe manner?

See results

In a recent conversation with a few police officers, I found out that they 'unfortunately' have the right to the roadways. But are required to follow the 'rules' of the road. But these rules are not taught to new owners of E bikes or bicycles. Only to licensed operators. Yet, once again, the rules that apply to E bikes, and bicycles are not being taught enough. These officers explained that using the word unfortunately is that they can see the 'safe operation' issues coming soon. One of them told me that they stopped an E bike and warned them of an infraction.

Get this: This E bike operator, drove up to a stop light and as there were 3 cars ahead of him/her, (the officer was the 3rd car back from the light) proceeded to drive up onto the sidewalk, round the corner to the right then pull back onto the roadway non-stop.

The officer, proceeded to pull the 45 year old man over and explain that the correct operation of the E bike is to stop in the roadway behind the last car and proceed with a right signal once the lights turned green and the traffic ahead of him was clear. The man, who is basically my age, (no not me) told the officer he should worry about drivers that are making mistakes not him. The officer informed him that 'he' was one of those drivers, and if he caught him doing it again, he would be required to charge him under the highway traffic act.

That is all the officer told me of his encounter, but you can understand just how dangerous it was what the man had done. While at first thought, we might just set it aside as some little thing. I have seen some crazy things in the past year.

Where I live, there is no reason for someone to be out on one of these bikes in the winter on slushy roads. Yet just last week, while returning home from St. Thomas, my wife and I witnessed this very thing. Two younger teen boys were riding right down the slush and snow covered road. Both feet from each of them dangling to the ground for balance, they slipped and slid all over the road in front of us until turning onto a side street where they went down. What a couple of fools.

I believe that there needs to be an operators license and training for these E bikes. Seriously, people... I want you to save the environment. Save the fuel. Save on transportation costs. But I along with many many other motor vehicle operators want to keep the roads safe.

Please send me your feedback. Respectful responses on any view will be accepted.

... Keep Our Roads Safe ...

Here are just a few examples how errors can be made.

Comments

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    • Jester98 profile image

      Jester98 

      6 years ago

      Good stuff. Electric bikes are the future, not just scooters but converting your regular bike into one. I plan on giving it a shot this summer. Doing the research now.

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