Sharing the Road with E-bikes – What You Should Know
It is becoming increasingly common to see E-bikes buzzing along on the streets throughout cities and towns in Ontario. The cost-efficiency and mobility that an E-bike provides its riders, together with the environmental benefits, have amplified its popularity. With the increased use, there also comes the increased possibility of injury. Cars don’t always appreciate that they need to share the road. If a serious or catastrophic injury occurs as a result of an accident, an e-bike owner will want to ensure they are protected in the unfortunate event they require a claim for damages as a result of the collision and injury.
In Ontario, E-bikes do not require insurance, so long as they adhere to the regulations. The driver must be at least sixteen years of age and wear an approved helmet. There are also weight, speed, wheel and braking requirements. Equally important are the restrictions on modifying an E-Bike, one such example is the need to maintain the pedal system. If the pedals are removed from the E-Bike, it no longer considered a “power-assisted bicycle” under the Highway Traffic Act, and therefore requires both registration and insurance (much like a moped or motorcycle). Such insurance is available through your broker or insurer. If, as a result of an accident, you are injured on an E-bike that has been modified, there is a good chance that you will be unable to sue the person who hit you because you are uninsured. This may also have an impact on the accident benefits you might receive to help you to recover from your injuries.
If you are seriously injured on an E-bike it is important that you contact a personal injury lawyer to help you manoeuvre through the insurance system. Our team would be more than happy to speak with you.