What is the Electric Bicycle Law in San Diego?

Environmentally conscious bikers in traffic in San Francisco, California. Motion blur on the subjects - faces unrecognizable.Bikes haven’t come a long way in the last 100 years, but one major advancement is the electric bike. With this technological marvel comes new rules, which is kind of a bummer, but it’s for our own safety, I promise. A new electric bicycle law was actually passed recently that anyone on an electric bike should really know about.

Back in October of last year, Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law a bill designed to clarify the differences and the regulations between regular old bicycles and the future. Some popular organizations were behind the bill, including PeopleForBikes, the California Bicycle Commission, and the Bicycle Product Suppliers Association.

What Does the New E-Bike Bill Say?

The purpose of the new bill is to clarify how and where e-bikes are allowed to be used. This also includes regulations pertaining to what kinds of equipment should be used during operation of an e-bike.

Perhaps most importantly, the new bill has changed e-bikes from being classified with mopeds, meaning that, for the most part, e-bikes will be regulated the same as regular bicycles. That means they will no longer have to be registered, or subject to insurance requirements. Also, there will be no license requirement to ride an e-bike.

The bill has also divided electric bicycles into separate categories. This allows the bikes to be classified as either lower speed, which have a motor assisted speed of 20 mph or less, and higher speed, which can travel 28 mph or less. Local governments throughout the state should be afforded more flexibility to determine which e-bikes are allowed to travel in different locations.

The hope is that this bill can serve as a model for other states looking to modernize their electric bike laws. The response has been overwhelmingly positive here in San Diego, and why wouldn’t it be? It’s a bill for cyclists, backed and advocated for by cyclists.

If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, call or fill out an online form today for a free consultation and find out how San Diego bicycle accident attorney Bonnici Law Group can help you.