This is the first eBike fatality I've come across.
This is the first eBike fatality I've come across.
From the article:
That says it all.She was not wearing a helmet.
Right on JS. I have a bin full of wrecked motorcycle and equestrian helmets, I know for sure at least two of them saved me from certain checkout.
I never go riding without a helmet.
There is another concern here. One I have noted here in my town.
I do not ride e bikes
I have ridden for years and on flat ground can ride my orbea 20-23 mph on flat ground for a long time. I have ridden and trained a lot to get to this level. During this time I have gained experience and knowledge about how to handle a bike and road situations.
An Ebike skips the time and experience that is required to get to the point where you can ride a bike fairly fast. Sure some ebike users are otherwise experienced riders, but some are not. And they go from, "hey I rode a bike 20 years ago", to now riding 25 or more mph.
The lady in this article should have worn a helmet. But she was just on a test ride, so was likely unfamilar with it's, or many even any, bike's operation.
Question is, would you let an inexperienced person jump onto a motorcycle, even if they said they would not exceed 25 mph? If you wouldn't then an inexperienced person should not be able to jump right onto an ebike and take off.
Not too much to say here
I'm surprised myself that "she went over the handlebars". The only time that happened to me is when a brake lever came loose from the handlebar and dangled into the front spokes: I was a mess that day I can tell you, being a kid at the time I recovered quickly. Sounds like a mechanical problem may have caused this and no helmet finalized it.
This thing that worries me about this. Here comes bigger governement to protect us. Higher taxes to support more cops to make more arrest on the populace.
I've been in 2 electric bike crashes,
1) Ran into electric pole guy wire that wasn't yellow marked. In the early morning hours.
2) Got ran over by little ole lady in her 1987 olds 88 custom cruiser station wagon, she didn't see me wearing my yellow safety vest and jacket with yellow reflective striped sleeves. Hit my head on the very corner of the curb. Dragged me for 20 ft on the asphalt, underneath the car. With my bike caught under the engine of the car, my bike saved me from being run over, acted as a cow catcher, and I was the cow.
Both times I was wearing an ANSI rated hard hat, not exactly riding gear but it saved my life twice.
Oh yeah and the ticket the little ole lady got was for careless driving, a fine only ticket, the cop didn't want to file a report for reckless driving a misdemeanor, she would have had to go thru probation and seen a PO I emailed the police chief and he told me she didn't have intent to hit me, because I wanted to file a criminal complaint of assault with intent to maim, which is a felony and up to $5,000 fine and year in jail.
She sure the hell seen my shoelaces untied after the accident but she didn't see me, before she hit me? Good thing the cops got video and audio, when he showed up after she hit me, with my bike still underneath the car.
Last edited by raypsi; 05-31-09 at 07:39 PM. Reason: more
may the rest of your life be the best of your life
I was considering an electric bike earlier this year as an intermediate vehicle between my Peugeot and the car. I took the MSF ( motorcycle safety foundation ) class and ended up with motorcycle instead. This accident reminded of an event that happened during the class.
One of the riding tests was to shift into second gear then brake to a stop as quickly as possible while downshifting back into first. The first time I did this, I felt like I was going over the handlebars because I instinctively grapped the right brake lever like I would do on my Peugeot, but on motorcycles, the right lever is the front brake not the rear.
I have no idea which brake is activated by the right brake lever on an electric bike.
Lefties, well, you guys are strange anyway! ( jk )
I typically keep my bikes (e and non-e both) set up with the front brake in my right hand (motorcycle style). When I signal my turns I use my left hand and like to have my power brake in my right hand.
I live in California and was unaware that other countries have the brake levers reversed from the traditional US setup but then I am one of those strange lefties so it worked until I bought the motorcycle. All the bikes I have owned came setup US standard from the manufacturer.
I have not been pitched forward much by applying the rear brake on either a motorcycle or bicycle. I have locked the rear wheels on both and experienced little forward motion. It may be that is because the rear brake accounts for less than 30% of braking. In the class the instructor said that 70% or more of a motorcycles braking is from the front brake.
I was just curious how e-bikes come setup from the factory for the US market, like motorcycles or like bicycles. If the factory sets them up like a motorcycle then it could have contributed to this accident if the person squeezed the right lever thinking it was the rear brake and their experience (like mine) is that even a hard application of the rear brake could not throw them over the handlebars.
e-bikes are defined as bicycles and as such must adhere to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission regulations.I was just curious how e-bikes come setup from the factory for the US market, like motorcycles or like bicycles.
These regulations then mandates (§ 1512.5 b (8)) thatCode of Federal Regulations Title 16 § 1512.2
(a) Bicycle means:
(2) A two- or three-wheeled vehicle with fully operable pedals and an electric motor of less than 750 watts (1 h.p.), whose maximum speed on a paved level surface, when powered solely by such a motor while ridden by an operator who weighs 170 pounds, is less than 20 mph.
(source: http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text....1.2.5&idno=16)(8) Hand lever location. The rear brake shall be actuated by a control located on the right handlebar and the front brake shall be actuated by a control located on the left handlebar. The left-hand/right-hand locations may be reversed in accordance with an individual customer order. If a single hand lever is used to actuate both front and rear brakes, it shall meet all applicable requirements for hand levers and shall be located on either the right or left handlebar in accordance with the customer's preference..
so yes. e-bikes are required to be configured like regular bikes.
This is interesting. I just crashed on an e bike. Was just starting to go at very slow speed and went to slow down for my ride mates ahead and applied the right brake. The bike came to an abrupt halt and pitched me off. I was wearing a helmet, for whoever is interested in that aspect. The crash was very strange; I've been riding bikes for years and have never had a bike stop like that before. I discussed it at length with my son, who does bicycles. I thought maybe I'd started the power assist and braking as it started made it out of proportion to the speed somehow but he said that wouldn't have done it. He wondered if there was something going on with freewheeling/brake coming together or something and locking the chain.
In Canada at least, its a legal requirement to wear a helmet on an ebike, even though its not for a regular bicycle. The reasons are simple - an ebike can be driven effortlessly at average speeds higher than a rider can maintain on a regular bicycle, the bike us heavier and therefore can take more strength to manage. The most common issue is for new riders to misjudge their speed when approaching a corner.
However, all legal ebikes I've seen in Canada use brushless motors and are required by law to have cutoff switches on the brake levers to disengage the motor when either brake is applied. So the motor would have no impact on the situation. The only exception would be a motor with regenerative capabilities which would add to the braking effect slightly, and with a rear wheel motor - there would be no tendency to pitch anyone over the bars.
I'd suspect a mechanical issue and if anyone has any similar issues, suggest the brakes and drivetrain are both inspected and confirmed to be OK. Obviously, a mechanical problem can have disasterous consequences and even on a regular bike, its essential that everything is operating as it should.
the article simply says that the bike 'went down' and she hit her head.
no indication of motor-induced unsafe speeds, or of any mechanical faults
maybe she just lost her balance and landed is exactly the wrong way
just as easily could have happened on a non-electric bike
That article is over 3 years old.
She had a Masters in Counceling Psychology, yet made a dropout's decision to not wear a helmet.
The Bearded Fred: Only known cyclist left in the world to be 100% natural and completely free from performance enhancing drugs. Also known for self reliance, amazing talent for satisfying the women and great guitar riffs. Honestly, a full racing kit is absolutely the most ridiculous looking stuff you can wear short of a clown suit."
Agreed. Locking this zombie thread.