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New York City puts brakes on e-bikes

Published May 13, 2013

NEW YORK, NY (BRAIN) — The New York City Council has cracked down on e-bikes in a move intended to discourage restaurant delivery cyclists who have angered residents by speeding against traffic or zooming down sidewalks. 

In April, the council approved a measure to impose fines of $100 to $250 for businesses that have an e-bike on their premises, or if their employees are caught making deliveries for the business on an e-bike. 

"Electric bicycles are not bikes. They are deceptively fast because of their sudden acceleration, and that is why they are illegal."

“Because we see them everywhere, many people don’t know that e-bikes are already illegal. They are a danger to New Yorkers because they are significantly faster and heavier than regular bikes,” Council Speaker Christine Quinn said in a statement. “This legislation will help to enforce the city’s e-bike ban, and will send a clear message to businesses that the use of these dangerous vehicles will not be tolerated. “Bottom line: E-bikes are unlicensed, unsafe and unwelcome in our city.” 

Councilman Dan Garodnick said, “Electric bicycles are not bikes. They are deceptively fast because of their sudden acceleration, and that is why they are illegal. These bills will give the city the tools it needs to properly enforce the law.”

E-bikes have been in legal limbo in New York state because the state has never updated its transportation code to reflect federal law, which treats e-bikes as bicycles if they meet certain qualifications.

 

Topics associated with this article: Electric bike

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