EBIKE Rules in the USA and Canada
Canada, Europe and the United States have all passed legislation regarding
electric bicycles and categorize them separately from mopeds and motorcycles.
In 2001, the U. S. Congress passed Public Law 107-319 which exempts electric
bikes under 750 watts and limited to 20 mph (with operating pedals) from the
legal definition of a motor vehicle
Some states have passed their own laws, but states cannot constitutionally
pass legislation that reduces or eliminates Federal laws. An electric bike is
legally a bicycle, so you can use it wherever and however you’re able to use
a standard bicycle. But additional laws governing the operation and safety of
electric bikes may be extended by state or local governments. In most states,
no license, insurance or registration is required. It is possible that police
in your area may not understand the specific rules pertaining to electric bikes,
so it is a good idea to visit your state or provincial web site and print off
a copy of your local rules and store them in your ebike just in case you need
Some Web Site Links you may need.
US Comsumer Product and Safety
Since 2001, Canada’s Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations (MVSR) have defined Power
Assisted bicycles (PABs). Power Assisted Bicycles (PABs) are defined as a unique
vehicle, separate from a bicycle with an attached (electric only) motor.
The Canada Gazette (official paper that publishes government regulations)
clarifies that a motorcycle
is not a power-assisted bicycle, and goes on to define limits on the weight,
dimensions, speed, electric wattage output, and other properties of a power-assisted
bicycle. For example, power-assisted-bicycles are limited to an electric motors
of 500 W output and a maximum speeds of 32 km/h. Other safety requirements must
also be met.
This vehicle can be imported and exported freely within Canada without the
same restrictions placed on an automobile
or a moped, although electric bicycles are not allowed in a few jurisdictions.
In federal law, a moped is considered a “limited speed motorcycle”,
and is therefore not a PAB.
Provincial and Territorial Ministries Responsible for Transportation
The following links provide information about transportation issues for which
the provinces and territories are responsible. Please visit the site for the
province or territory where you live to learn more.
•Alberta – Ministry
•British Columbia – Ministry
of Transportation and Infrastructure
•Manitoba – Manitoba
Infrastructure and Transportation
•New Brunswick – Department
•Newfoundland and Labrador – Transportation
•Northwest Territories – Department
•Nova Scotia – Department
of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal
•Nunavut – Department
of Economic Development and Transportation
•Ontario – Ministry
•Prince Edward Island – Department
of Transportation and Public Works
•Quebec – Transports
•Saskatchewan – Highways
•Yukon Territory – Department
of Highways and Public Works