E-Bikes aren't new to the bike scene, however their implementation in Police & Security bike patrol units are. Speed capabilities via pedal assist allow officers to arrive onscene faster. We've tested out multiple brands and classes of eBikes in our Bike Patrol Training courses and have chosen what we think are some of the best options to use in the Law Enforcement industry.
eBike Classifications in California
A “class 1 electric bicycle,” or “low-speed pedal-assisted electric bicycle,” is a bicycle equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling, and that ceases to provide assistance when the bicycle reaches the speed of 20 miles per hour.
A “class 2 electric bicycle,” or “low-speed throttle-assisted electric bicycle,” is a bicycle equipped with a motor that may be used exclusively to propel the bicycle, and that is not capable of providing assistance when the bicycle reaches the speed of 20 miles per hour.
A “class 3 electric bicycle,” or “speed pedal-assisted electric bicycle,” is a bicycle equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling, (no throttle) and that ceases to provide assistance when the bicycle reaches the speed of 28 miles per hour and equipped with a speedometer.
California Law FAQ's
In California, “An electric bicycle is a bicycle equipped with fully operable pedals and an electric motor of less than 750 watts” (CA Vehicle Code 312.5 (a)).
Just like regular bicycles, E-bikes should NOT be ridden on sidewalks or pedestrian pathways. Remeber E-bikes can easily hit 30mph, making it dangerous for non-motorized cyclists and pedestrians around you.
The operation of motorized bikes an of a class 3 electric bicycles hall not be operated on a bicycle path or trail, bikeway, bicycle lane established, equestrian trail, or hiking or recreational trail, unless it is within or adjacent to a roadway or unless the local authority or the governing body of a public agency having jurisdiction over the path or trail permits, by ordinance, that operation 21207.5.(a).
No. However, if you are under the age of 16 then you cannot operate a Class 3 E-bike, and must wear a certified bicycle helmet (CVC 21213(a)). E-Bikes are NOT subject to needing financial responsibility, driver’s licenses, registration, license plate requirements, and an electric bicycle is not a motor vehicle CVC 24016(b).
The laws mentioned above apply to E-Bike users in California. They vary state by state. For more information about laws and regulations in the area live visit peopleforbikes.org or click on the image below. You can choose your state and find out what laws apply to you.